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Chapter 39: An Approach for Analysing In... > THE METHODOLOGICAL APPROACH - Pg. 658

An Approach for Analysing Interactions within Virtual Learning Communities tates the reach of comprehension of the meaning and of the assigned task-at-hand. In Fahy's model, scaffolding is a very wide category wrapping not only cognitive elements, but even affective. A further problem concerns sequential models. The critical thinking model by Gunawardena, for instance, is excessively strict in prescribing succession of the five phases. It doesn't exist a predetermined rule for which a specific phase should necessarily follow another phase. The disapproval or the negotiation of a concept can follow the exposure of a point of view, but a further point of view, appeared at accomplished negotiation, can make reconsider everything. The sequential model by Jeong, instead, errs on the side of an excessive analyticism, since considers a message in a relation one-to-many and loses sight of the whole messages which enhance to identify phases, or at least some tendencies. It is to be hopefully expected that enquiries components on which it is assumed collaborative learning relies on. If learning is conceived as a complex pro- cess generated from the ensemble of cognitive, metacognitive and socio-relational dynamics, the emotive-affective sphere could be considered as a hypothetical third axis strictly related to the other two, but with such relevance that it can't be assimilated to any of them. A path to reach a more complete vision, not disregarding aspects significant for learning, could be the exploration of the "vectorial field" resulting from the encounter among these three dimensions. To build this model it was necessary to in- dividuate an epistemic connotation both of the topic and of the methodological approach, to identify the various aspects to investigate and the specific points of view from which the enquiry would start up. At first, the concept of interaction on which