Virtual Learning Communities: review of a decade of Spanish-Portuguese scientific production


  • Manuela Raposo-Rivas Universidad de Vigo
  • Joaquim Escola Universidade de Tras-os-Montes e Alto Douro


Virtual Learning Communities (CVA) by definition, are aimed at learning and building knowledge both individually and collectively in a technology mediated environment characterized by interactions and collaborations. The profusion of technological developments in the last decade has encouraged the parallel development of multiple and varied CVA that respond to different socio-cultural types and contexts. Therefore, in this paper we care about analysing the scientific production done on this subject in Spanish and Portuguese during the last decade. Following a qualitative bibliometric design, a sample of 73 items obtained from Scopus, CSIC, Dialnet and CAPES databases has been studied, using a registration categorized in bibliographic components (year, keywords, number of authors, number of pages) and thematic elements (authors’ institution, context, purpose and type of community, virtual support and type of contribution). After an information content analysis, the findings show an increase and change in the proposals regarding the technological support of the CVA, from platforms and virtual classrooms to Web 2.0 applications such as social networks and wikis. At the same time, the benefits of these virtual communities are empirically verified.