Document Type

Conference Paper

Publication Date


Publication Details

This conference paper was originally published as Pais Marden, M, The travel project: designing and implementing an online community of learners using design based research, Proceedings of the Emerging Technologies Conference, University of Wollongong, 18-21 June 2008.


This paper describes a research study that adopted the model of design-based research (DBR) outlined by Reeves (2006) to design and implement an online community of language learners within the context of an Italian as a second language university class. An online community of learners that included a group of second and third year students of Italian, their teacher and seven native speakers facilitators was developed and implemented according to the principles that guide community development, the use of authentic and situated activities, and according to Vygotsky’s sociocultural theory applied to second language learning. This paper describes the four phases of this study according to the model of DBR outlined by Reeves, and discusses the theoretical principles that inform the development of the online learning environment.