Structure and content of messages in an online environment: An approach from participation

Jorge Chávez, Rosa Montaño, Rosa Barrera

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


This study examines the participation of 24 university professors in the training process that uses on-line environment, which has a duration of 36 h in classroom and 30 h online. The main aim of the course is to provide theoretical and methodological elements that allow teachers to investigate and innovate in their educational practice. With this purpose, the messages were analysed regarding their nature, information level, depth level, and the relation between each of the indicators. The data corpus corresponds to ten discussion forums which were part of a training program in research and innovation in university teaching. The methodology used for the analysis considered the combination of quantitative indicators of participation with an analysis of message content. The results show that the messages are organized mainly around the content or learning task, which in turn tend to concentrate on levels with less complexity and depth. The data also indicate that there is a relation between message length, information level, and depth level achieved by the contributions of the participants when they collaborate in an online environment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)560-568
Number of pages9
JournalComputers in Human Behavior
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2016


  • Analysis of the participation
  • Computer-mediated collaborative environments
  • Content analysis
  • Educational psychology
  • Technology and learning

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • General Psychology


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