Negotiating space exploring the rhetorical potential of open source software

Date of Award


Degree Name

M.A. in English


Department of English


Advisor: Andrew Slade


Virtual learning environments have received little academic or critical attention pertaining to their rhetorical implications or their effects on the agency of their users. While some scholars Cynthia and Richard Selfe (1994) and Darin Payne (2005) have issued calls for increased academic engagement with the software designers and developers of virtual educational spaces, or Learning Management Systems (LMSs), few have heeded that call. The growing popularity of open source software creates an opportunity for a renewed dialogue about what educators and software developers can accomplish at the local level to create and maintain virtual learning spaces that accurately reflect the goals and values of local institutions, faculty, and students. This thesis enters into that conversation by directly addressing the people involved in the building and development of virtual pedagogical spaces. This is accomplished by focusing on a specific LMS (Isidore) in a specific local environment (the University of Dayton).


University of Dayton Computer-assisted instruction Case studies, Computer-assisted instruction Case studies, Computer-assisted instruction Computer programs Case studies, Education, Higher Computer-assisted instruction Case studies, Educational technology Case studies, Teaching Computer network resources Case studies, Internet in higher education Case studies, Open source software, Web-based instruction Design

Rights Statement

Copyright 2011, author