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Use of Collaboration Assignments to Support Online Learning Communities

Dr Darina Slattery (Technical Communication and Instructional Design, School of Culture and Communication) recently received funding from the AHSS faculty research committee to attend, and present at, the IEEE Professional Communication Conference (ProComm 2017), which took place in Madison, Wisconsin from 23-26 July 2017.  The conference website is

Dr Slattery co-presented a paper titled ‘Use of Collaboration Assignments to Support Online Learning Communities’ with Dr Yvonne Cleary. In their paper, Darina and Yvonne described how they integrate global virtual team projects, peer review assignments, and collaborative development projects into their modules, to facilitate the development of online learning communities among on-campus and online students.

The annual ProComm conference is an international conference that attracts academics and practitioners from the fields of technical communication, e-learning, and usability.  Over the years, Darina has formed connections with several international colleagues at this conference; one such connection led to the publication of her co-authored book titled ‘Virtual Teams in Higher Education: A Handbook for Students and Teachers’, which was published by Information Age Publishing in 2016 (available on

During her time in Madison, Darina also attended a two-day meeting of the administrative committee of the Professional Communication Society (PCS), of which she is an elected board member.  The PCS runs the annual ProComm conference, manages outreach and member engagement, and publishes the IEEE Transactions on Professional Communication journal (WoS indexed).

Darina is also the conference proceedings co-chair for ProComm 2017 (with Yvonne Cleary).  The ProComm papers will shortly be published in the WoS collection (ISBN 978-1-5090-3042-2) and in the Scopus database.

In addition to the AHSS research funding, Darina received funding from the School of Culture and Communication to attend, and present at, ProComm 2017.

Darina’s current research projects are concerned with learning analytics, content analysis, flipped classrooms, online learning/ e-learning, and virtual teams.  She is a collaborator in the EUCERMAT Erasmus+ project, whereby she delivers e-learning training to academic staff in five EU institutions, undertakes research on best practice in online delivery, coordinates blended mobility activities, and facilitates the online delivery of teaching units.  Further details about her teaching and research activities can be found on

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