History and Transformations

Welcome to the Center for Education Research on Literacies, Learning & Inquiry in Networking Communities (LINC). The Center has a long, rich history of collaborative research with teacher-, student- and university-based ethnographers (1990-present).

Santa Barbara Classroom Discourse Group

The community was first known as the Santa Barbara Classroom Discourse Group (1990-present). This interactive group brought university-based ethnographers together with teacher ethnographers to explore complex issues of teaching and learning across disciplines in classrooms. Members of the community published individually and collectively, at times using the collective name, The Santa Barbara Classroom Discourse Group. As members moved to different universities and schools, took new positions and developed new directions in ethnographic research and discourse analysis work in classrooms with teachers, the SBCDG community has grown.

In 2001, members of the center began exploring the potential of the CENIC/CALren Highway that linked K-12 county offices with the University of California and California State University networks as well as California’s Community Colleges.

In 2002, a project, in which sixth grade students in Santa Barbara became docents for students from Elk Grove School District in Sacramento, leading them on a virtual and interactive tour of an exhibit of the Henrietta Marie: A Slave Ship Speaks. Following this event, students in Elk Grove, at their request, held a second video conference event, Voices from the Field, in which they interviewed a professor and her students at California State University, Sacramento, about their growing up in migrant worker camps. The Elk Grove students engaged Santa Barbara students in those interviews as well. The Henrietta Marie project was given the Education Vision Award by CENIC (Corporation for Education Network Initiatives in California).

New Initiatives

Building on the Henrietta Marie project and Voices from the Field, the center developed new initiatives called PRISMS (Perspectives on Research and Inquiry with Students In Multiple spaces). These initiatives built on the successful professional development approach of the National Writing Project (NWP)and its local site, the South Coast Writing Project.

Three strands were developed through the collaboration and co-expertise of a number of networking communities:

Hidden Histories

Cultural Landscapes

Performing Arts.

In each of these strands, participants representing all levels of K-20 designed community-based inquiry projects. In these projects students engaged (and continue to engage) in the work of members of academic disciplines. acting as historians, oral historians, scientists, artists, actors, writers, to investigate local stories (e.g., Japanese Internment, immigration). They then engaged with other groups in their networking communities in order to explore the global implications raised through their collaborative inquiries.

The center projects connected through summer institutes. Local teachers networked with teachers within the state, teachers from National Writing Project sites (Area 3 Writing Project, Red Clay Writing Project, Ohio Writing Project) and teachers working with colleagues in universities in other states (e.g., UNLV and the Odyssey Online Charter School). Those engaged in developing and implementing projects also maintained ongoing connections through interactive video conferencing to plan and access resources. Students also connected over time and across distance, through pen pal letters, private, password-protected blog sites (focused on common investigative issues or pieces of literature), and through interactive video conferences that included opportunities to share and discuss their research (Yeager & Elder, 2005).

Members of group have had a unique and collaborative history of publishing. In our communities intellectual and practice expertise is brought together in dynamic and interactive ways, leading to collaborative research, curriculum design, and writing. We view ourselves as developing professionals, who work collaboratively to explore how teaching expertise in K-12 forms a foundation for understanding and identifying theory-practice relationships

Expanding Directions

In 2014 LINC expanded its mission, becoming the Center for Education Research in Litearcies, Learning & Inquiry in Networking Communities (L2INC).  The new name represents the expanded directions of the Center’s work and the inclusion of Dr. Dorothy Chun as co-director with Dr. Judith Green.  The expanded direction represents a growing research specialization in Learning, Culture and Technology studies in the Gervertz Graduate School of Education. Our communities are exploring the potential for networking made possible by the development of advanced networking technologies– CALren in California and Internet2 and its international partners. These technologies provide a digital highway our communities are traveling to create a new learning community for both teachers and students. This new learning space makes seamless and dynamic interactions possible and multi-media planning and sharing of research and curriculum innovations across geographic distances in real time, ordinary.

L2INC continues the work of the Santa Barbara Classroom Discourse Group, while embracing new opportunities and possibilities of the digital age.