Revision with unchanged content. The role and face of the college student has drastically changed with many traditional college students (18-22 year olds) facing extraordinary costs of college tuition, having to work in addition to attending school, and the non-traditional adult learner returning to school has left universities and colleges with little physical space for classes and a need to address the new learners. Online education offers an opportunity for working students to attend college while addressing work and other responsibilities. The problem is that online education is new to not only students, but also faculty teaching in these areas. One areas is the use of the communication tools used in online courses such as e-mail, instant messaging, chat rooms, etc. Another is one may assume that younger students have an advantage over adults using communications tools. Students sometimes feel the isolation as well as the faculty member of being disconnected in an online course. This research examined how students used communication tools to foster social communications in order to connect to one another in a social learning environment that provided a richer context for a learning community to evolve during the semester. Does gender affect the way students use communication tools to connect using social communications?