Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)

Degree Granting Department

Educational Leadership and Policy Studies

Major Professor

Leonard Burrello, Ed.D.

Committee Member

Vonzell Agosto, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Steven Downey, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Anthony Rolle, Ph.D.


Collaboration, Critical Discourse Analysis, Critical Theory, Virtual


This transformative case study used qualitative and quantitative methods to explore the social construction of collaborative and technology leadership among students in a graduate-level course on curriculum leadership. Analysis of interactions among students during an asynchronous computer-supported collaborative learning (CSCL) project using critical discourse analysis was completed. Student dialogue was analyzed for how students across different social groups interacted discursively to promote and inhibit the development of leadership in the domains of collaboration and technology, while socially constructing the knowledge context for learning about the societal curriculum for diverse social groups. Findings were that women more than men were verbose and promotive, and that much of their power/language exchanges involved mutual understanding. Black students were underrepresented in the graduate course, but gained power through language and course design. Latino students lacked self-advocacy and emphasized cultural diversity in their use of power/language. An interview with the professor provides insight into the structures that frame student's experiences. These findings are discussed through a three-tiered Critical Discourse Analysis Framework and recommendations are made for educators, leaders and education leadership preparation programs that use on-line learning platforms that support collaborative learning experiences.