Ethos and Practice of a Connected Learning Movement: Interpreting Virtually Connecting Through Alignment with Theory and Survey Results

Maha Bali, Autumm Lee Ann Caines, Helen DeWaard, Rebecca Hogue


Virtually Connecting (VC) is a connected learning volunteer movement that enlivens virtual conference experiences by partnering those that are at the conference with virtual participants that cannot attend. In looking to articulate the ethos and intentions of VC, a manifesto was developed by a group of core members and presented at the Digital Learning Research Network in 2015. This paper connects the group’s ethos, as defined in this manifesto, to various learning theories including Connectivism, connected learning, and the practice of online communities. The paper reports on both quantitative and qualitative results from a survey sent to members of the community over February and March of 2016, as well as some information obtained from blogs and other forms of social media, and ties these results to the manifesto items. This alignment of theory and participant feedback shows continuity between the stated ethos of the community and the impressions of those living the volunteer experience.


Learning Community; Synchronous; Video; Academic Conferences

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