Academic self-concept in virtual learning environments

José António Marques Moreira, Rita Manuela Barros, Angélica Maria Monteiro


Regarding the new challenges faced by education today, the use of virtual learning environments and the analysis of their impact in the technical-vocational and psychosocial development in higher education students has conquered a growing interest amongst scientific community, namely in the field of social sciences. The object of this research is to describe the impact of using online environments on the academic self-concept of Portuguese higher education students (n= 120), based on the qualitative analysis of their own perceptions and narratives. The background standards of the research are supported by the most relevant theoretical models, with special emphasis on the Community of Inquiry Model [1]as far as learning in virtual environments is concerned, which will be used as an analytical grid for the collected data. The results show that these virtual learning, environments - which design is anchored in the development of competences and in learning seen from a pedagogical model based in the principles like constructivism, autonomy and interaction - may have very positive effects on the academic self-concept of higher education students in the various dimensions taken into consideration: Motivation, Orientation for the task, Trust in their own capacities and Relationship with colleagues. The implications of the results are discussed not only from a practical intervention point of view but also in terms of future research.


academic self-concept; virtual environments; higher education



Revista Brasileira de Informática na Educação (RBIE) (ISSN: 1414-5685; online: 2317-6121)
Brazilian Journal of Computers in Education (RBIE) (ISSN: 1414-5685; online: 2317-6121)