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Title: Creating affinity spaces through Instagram to enhance students’ virtual learning exchanges in a Green Dentistry Project
Authors: Vahed, Anisa
de Souza, Fábio Barbosa 
Keywords: COIL;Instagram®;Green dentistry;Affinity space;Dental technology
Issue Date: 30-Dec-2022
Publisher: Society for Research and Knowledge Management
Source: Vahed, A. and de Souza, F.B. 2022. Creating affinity spaces through Instagram to enhance students’ virtual learning exchanges in a Green Dentistry Project. Presented at: International Conference on Multidisciplinary Research (MYRES). 2022: 1-11. doi:10.26803/myres.2022.01
Journal: International Conference on Multidisciplinary Research (MYRES) 
Infusing Instagram® into higher education teaching, learning and assessment practices proliferates the literature as an ally for students to have meaningful learning experiences. There is limited evidence, however, of its use in transforming dental education practices, specifically collaborative online learning of eco-dentistry practices. The purpose of this paper is to assess the Dental Technology (n=23) and Dentistry (n=10) students’ opinions about and reflections on their experiences of using Instagram® in a Green Dentistry Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL) Virtual Exchange Project (VEP). An interpretive research paradigm and a descriptive case study research design within a qualitative framework were used. Students’ open-ended responses to the challenges and benefits of using Instagram® and their reflective reports of their COIL VEP experiences were thematically analyzed. Three main themes emerged namely, familiarity with using Instagram®; educational benefits of using Instagram®; and lack of supportive infrastructure. Using Instagram® to create affinity spaces for students to experience meaningful learning in a COIL VEP can intensify their focus, amplify their attention, and exemplify the application of theoretical concepts to professional-based practice. These findings suggest that Instagram® used in COIL VEPs requires a rethink of the curriculum and delivery, particularly supporting the principles of preserving the confidentiality and privacy of patients online. There is limited evidence of globally distributed teams learning about eco-friendly dentistry through a COIL VEP. This nuanced internationalizing at home, pedagogical and assessment approach enables students to co-create and share disciplinary knowledge while improving their interpersonal and intercultural skills.
ISSN: 1694-3597
1694-3600 (Online)
DOI: 10.26803/myres.2022.01
Appears in Collections:Research Publications (Health Sciences)

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