Mapping Web 2.0 tools to Salmon’s Five Step Method.

by techagogy

5 Step to 4 phaseMapping Web 2.0 tools to Salmon’s Five Step Method.

From Gilly Salmon’s book “E-Moderating – The Key to Teaching and Learning Online“, she developed a model for the effectively delivery of E-learning trough CMC (Computer Mediated Communication).
These steps as outlined are:

1. Access and motivation,
2. Online socialization,
3. Information Exchange,
4. Knowledge construction and
5. Development.

How can this effective model be developed to take into account the new Web 2.0 tools and to adapt this to develop a model for effective E-learning in secondary schools?


Within the confines of a school, the first step becomes redundant, as access is generally built in to the students learning and motivation is an individual concept that is brought in by the teacher – the student will respond to an environment (virtual or physical) that enables motivation to flourish. The four other steps of online socialisation, information exchange and knowledge construction are clear, but perhaps the concept of Development needs changing to knowledge articulation? This defines that constructed knowledge can be articulated to an audience via a number of channels with the Web 2.0 tool of the Wiki being the catalyst for this.

Knowledge articulation would be a concept where the learner would demonstrate knowledge though the various electronic and personal channels available.

There is an issue also of looping within these steps, where information exchange/knowledge construction have an internal loop as well as to online socialisation. Perhaps there is also a need to change the definition of online socialisation to remove the “online” aspect, since learning technologies are becoming embedded, the word online is obsolete.

The online socialisation aspect can be seen as the continual thread that runs throughout the successful application of Web 2.0 tools to learning, here it is important that through effective socialisation, motivation will occur and that learners will be willing to engage. Here is important to manage this socialisation, including the use of multiple avators to allow various opinions to come through the same learner. Confidence to allow learners to reveal their real identity can come through close learner co-operation, plus allowing the use of fall back avatars’ which can enable the learners to regain their anonymity and delete a revealed avatar if required.

Web 2.0 tools such as the shared calendar and instant messaging allow the development of information exchange, within groups and in/out of the classroom. Through this blogging/Instant Messaging/Calendaring(!) enables further in depth learning moving the information exchange aspect towards the knowledge construction, here the web 2.0 tools of the discussion forum, tagging and RSS feeds can focus the learning towards a specific goal, again with this sitting on a sea of socialisation. If directed correctly articulation of learning can occur using a wiki, where production of learning can occur, this wiki is not the end result of learning but a tool to demonstrate learning through an articulation process, this can be achieved by presentation or via critical responses. This learning demonstrates its flow with the wiki, being involved back to the information exchange space, allowing the learner to develop their blogging/Instant messaging and calendaring (!) individually and within teams. Overall the Salmon five step method could be reduced to four spaces, indicating that effective E-learning occurs when these spaces are inhabited by the learner.

The following diagram perhaps best indicates this concept of the Web 2.0 Four Space Method for Effective E-Learning