“Determined women at work”
Group construction of narrative meaning
University of Tennessee
Although interest in narrative research is increasing, little attention has been paid to how individual stories become a group narrative. An online environment provides a rich opportunity to capture asynchronous group storytelling as it occurs in a formal class environment. This study focused on how a group story is created. Data included individual stories of four graduate student participants and the threads from their three-week, online discussion. Data analysis was collaborative among three researchers. The four participants used the online discussion to continue developing their own individual stories and to develop a group story. The women used temporality, shared themes, and epiphany to construct a story together. They extended a sense of agency to each other and to the group, using this aspect of their dialogue to reframe and recast individual stories and the group story. Implications for teaching and learning environments are discussed.
Keywords: Adult education, Blended learning, Higher education, Online discussion, Online learning, Group story, Group meaning-making, Dialogue
In: Narrative Inquiry 17:2. 2007 250 pp. (pp. 299–328)