Establishing a community of practice: from outsiders to insiders
A shared interest in scholarship of teaching and learning between three academics/ researchers stimulated the establishment of a community of practice. The spontaneous formation of the group developed into a formal and functioning CoP. The aim of this article is to explore the transformation of a group of nursing academics who started as outsiders in a support group to becoming insiders in a community of practice. A single intrinsic longitudinal case study design within a theory of action was used to illuminate and explicate the experiences of participants during the development (analytical frame) of a community of practice (object). Four themes were identified from the four construct bins, namely shared domain of interest, informal network, formal work group and community of practice. A true sense of belonging with concrete academic and research-related outcomes and a shared vision statement and values and beliefs clarification for sustainability characterizes the flourishing group.
Keywords: Community of practice, informal network, formal work group, collaboration