Peer-to-Peer Interaction in a Real-time Distance Learning Environment: Challenges and Aspirations
Abstract: This paper represents an overview of some key challenges of real-time collaborative peer learning in the Algerian context of distance learning (DL) and how we can mitigate them in the future from the students’ perspective. Elements of the synchronous collaborative peer learning environment are described. This environment has been recently investigated in a number of empirical studies involving collaborative problem-solving activities. From these studies it has been deduced that the tools used, and the mode of interaction has considerable impact on the degree of student engagement and satisfaction. However, most of these studies were dealing with text-based communication in a real-time environment. The proposed environment here is revolved around the audio-visual form of interaction using Skype as a primary tool that can be effectively integrated as an add on to the actual DL course that can contribute to building a community of learning made by students and for students.