Framework for Students’ Online Collaborative Writing

Birgitte Holm Sørensen, Karin Tweddell Levinsen, Madeleine Rygner Holm

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The paper focuses on collaborative writing in Google Docs and presents a framework for how students can develop methods for collaborations that include human and non-human actors. The paper is based on the large-scale research and development project Students’ Digital Production and Students as Learning Designers (2013–2015), funded by the Danish Ministry of Education. The target groups were primary and lower-secondary schools. The project explored teacher-designed frameworks that involved students’ agency as digital producers of learning objects aimed at peer students. The project demonstrated that digital production facilitates students’ learning processes and qualifies their learning results when executed within a teacher-designed framework that allows for and empowers students’ agency. The overall research design was organised as a mixed methods approach. A sub-study within the large project, which is based on an ethnographic approach, shows that the students develop their own strategies for the online collaborative process, through which they organise the work in different ways when interacting with the technological affordances and material performance of the technology. The sub-study also shows that teachers do not introduce or refer the students to online collaborative strategies, roles or communications. The students’ online collaborative writing is entirely within the students’ domain. On this basis, the paper focuses on how teachers’ awareness and articulation of the students’ online collaborative writing within a framework can qualify students´ methods to collaborate online with the intention to improve their learning results. In relation to this, the paper explores how digital technologies may act as co-participants in collaboration, production and reflection. Moreover, the framework is designed to help teachers to scaffold students’ reflections of their strategies, roles and communications in online collaborative writing processes.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 15th European Conference on E-learning Ecel 2016 : Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic 27-28 October 2016
EditorsJarmila Novotná, Antonin Jancarik
Number of pages7
Place of PublicationReading, UK
PublisherAcademic Conferences and Publishing International
Publication date2016
ISBN (Print)978-1-5108-3267-1
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-911218-17-3
Publication statusPublished - 2016
EventEuropean Conference on e-Learning 2016 - Charles University, Prag, Czech Republic
Duration: 27 Oct 201628 Oct 2016
Conference number: 15th


ConferenceEuropean Conference on e-Learning 2016
LocationCharles University
Country/TerritoryCzech Republic
Internet address


  • Online collaborative writing
  • teachers’ framework, students as learning designers, learning for collaboration, agency
  • students as learning designers
  • learning for collaboration
  • agency


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