The emergency school closures caused by the COVID-19 pandemic impacted students and teachers across the globe. This study explored how the Global Educator Collaborative Facebook group, with over 125,000 members, supported teachers as they adapted to distance learning instruction amid emergency school closures. Through the Facebook group, teachers built a community to share questions, challenges, and seek support from their peers. This study explored how teachers participated in the Facebook group between February 2020 and December 2021 and whether their participation represented Wenger’s criteria for a community of practice (Lave & Wenger, 1991; Wenger, 1998). An exploratory case study design (Yin, 2018) allowed for an in-depth study using artifacts of the Global Educator Collective Facebook group. Through a stratified two-step sampling process, artifacts for analysis were selected from a keyword search of technology challenges, technology support, technology win, or technology support within four identified phases (February-March 2020, April-July 2020, August 2020-March 2021, and April-December 2021). Eighty posts and associated comments were selected for thematic analysis, which found teachers posting for assistance on the teaching and learning environment, classroom management, instructional, and technology support. Through the associated comments, fellow members offered advice, suggested an application or tool, and/or offered to further the conversation off the Facebook page. A total of 1,320 passages were coded across all four phases with 68% or 904 posts and associated comments focused on instruction and classroom management. Additionally, 17% or 228 posts and associated comments were seeking or providing technology support. The findings showed how the needs changed across the four phases. While Phase 1 posts and comments focused on providing instructional and technology support as teachers shifted to distance learning; by Phase 3 the focus was more concerned with classroom management and technology support as teachers confronted hybrid and a return to in-person learning environments. This study affirms that teachers embraced a virtual community and used it to integrate new tools into their instruction, however it was not a true community of practice as defined by Wenger because it lacked the development of deep connections, shared resources, and widespread commitment among members.
Library of Congress Subject Headings
Teachers; Facebook (Electronic resource); COVID-19 Pandemic, 2020-; Social networks--Teachers
Date of Award
Graduate School of Education and Psychology
Sullivan, Maureen A., "Exploratory case study of teachers finding support from the global educator Facebook group during the emergency school closures of the Covid-19 pandemic" (2023). Theses and Dissertations. 1370.