A Collaborative Tool for Communities of Practice to Share Best Practices
Type of Degreedissertation
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This dissertation presents a For Youth For Life (FYFL) cloud tool as a unique solution to a problem of identifying an easy to use, scalable, cost effective, and fault tolerant collaborative system or tool for members of communities of practice to share best practices in line with Computer Supportive Collaborative Work (CSCW). The proposed research will be designed, developed and deployed as a secure collaborative tool or system that addresses issues related to usability, adaptation, and managing community of practice groups to promote informal learning and provide adequate support to help novice users overcome technophobia. This study performs empirical studies to support adopting a For Youth For Life (FYFL) cloud tool as a unique solution for communities of practice to share best practices in line with CSCW. The resulting tool, For Youth For Life (FYFL) cloud enable users to access information and collaborate effectively and its selection is efficiently supported by usability data among potential and expert users. The usability experiments and performance results fully demonstrate it as a user friendly, easy to that is easy to use, scalable, cost effective, and fault tolerant, and with straightforward user interfaces that foster the success of novice users. The usability experiments and performance results were instrumental in analyzing the perceived effectiveness and receptiveness of the proposed collaborative tool to share best practices within a Community of Practice (CoP). We consider technophobia and limited computer skills as main factors limiting collaboration among members of communities of practice, and strive to provide and validate an extensible and flexible CSCW tool that is easy to use and learn. This dissertation also proposes an innovative approach to hierarchical group management “Universal Quadrant Model” (UQM), a recursive, nondeterministic and backtracking generic algorithm. The computational framework manages self-purporting and emerging groups and provides a mechanism that limits fictitious accounts within an online community. UQM estimates the number of quadrants to represent spatial locality of groups relying on population density as an input factor. It is designed to cope with issues of adaptability, scalability, effectiveness, and efficiency in managing groups within a community of practice and is used for moderating users, navigation, locating and distribution of resources within an online system. The model provides a user friendly and efficient method for moderating a high number of users within groups by automating group formation. It also addresses the membership anonymity problem, and perpetuates self purporting and sustaining groups within a spatial locality i.e. (a community of practice group).