This paper describes the key notions of situated cognition, Vygotskian thought (zone of proximal development, the general law of cultural development and the mediational nature of signs and tools), and learning from the community of practice perspective. From these notions, we conceptualize principles on learning through which design considerations relevant to the web-based e-learning environments are drawn. These community-oriented web-based design principles can be summarized under four dimensions: situatedness, commonality, interdependency, and infrastructure. These e-learning design principles are illustrated with current web-based examples. In particular, the infrastructure dimension is of particular signi cance to web- based online environments. Rules and processes relevant to face-to-face communities may have to be radically transformed in the context of web-based e-learning communities.
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