n South African Journal of Higher Education - Lessons from a cross-cultural online learning community

Special Edition 1
  • ISSN : 1011-3487



This article seeks to explore the practical, cultural and educational effects of information and communication technology support and the computer mediated communication of doctoral candidates from cross-cultural backgrounds in an asynchronous online learning environment. The history of educational development is replete with technology-based projects that failed because of high operating costs, problems of adaptation to local conditions, lack of skilled personnel to operate the technologies, and lack of effectiveness. The challenge has been how to facilitate learning contexts that are productive for the individual learner. This investigation provided insights for the managers of the Norwegian Council for Higher Education's Programme for Development Research and Education (NUFU) Productive Learning Culture project on the challenges of such a project. Four lessons from this research emerged on cross-cultural learning communities, and have bearing on technology, project management, online learning communities, and cross-cultural issues.

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