This study examined the virtual interactions between novice teachers and their mentor using web-based tools such as blogging and instant messaging. The purpose of the study was to determine the nature of online communication and how web-based tools function in the mentoring process. The mentor/researcher created an online website where novice teachers and their mentor interacted by blogging, instant messaging, and virtually sharing digital resources and ideas for teaching literacy. As the novice teachers interacted on the website, the mentor/researcher conducted an online survey and kept digital records of all blogs and instant message sessions. Later, participants were interviewed and a researcher reflection log was examined to answer additional questions about how web-based tools could be used in the mentoring process. Analysis of the data showed that using web-based tools for virtual interaction provides meaningful mentoring opportunities and creates a platform for authentic discussion. However, the need for face-to-face communication in the mentoring process is still critical and not all novice teachers are comfortable with and interested in using this type of platform for communication. In order to use web-based tools effectively in the mentoring process, mentors must carefully consider their own knowledge of the tools, their time constraints and the interests, knowledge level and motivations of the novice teachers with whom they work.



College and Department

David O. McKay School of Education; Teacher Education



Date Submitted


Document Type





literacy instruction, mentoring, web-based mentoring, technology