Educational Theories,  Podcast,  Teaching & Learning

Transform Your Teaching: Building a Community of Inquiry for Effective Online Learning – Establishing Presence in Online Learning

Reading Time: 2 minutes

In this episode, Dr. Rob McDole and Jared Pyles continue discussing the Community of Inquiry framework, looking at the three types of presence in greater detail. Check out the episode to hear about how the three presences work together to create a robust online learning community.

Podcast links

Show notes

The three presences in the Community of Inquiry (COI) framework work together to influence learner engagement, active participation, and the sense of being in a learning community. Social presence, cognitive presence, and teaching presence also jointly enhance an instructor’s ability to stimulate class discussions and provide timely feedback. Each presence focuses on a different aspect of a course.  

Building social presence promotes mutual understanding among participants and facilitates knowledge exchange, often improving student motivation. It can be fostered through strategies such as icebreakers, photo sharing, and general discussions, creating a balance between a comfortable environment and maintaining professional boundaries. 

Cognitive presence is about engaging students with course content in ways that cultivate critical thinking skills. Activities that elicit analysis, synthesis, and evaluation – such as open-ended discussions, case studies, and journaling — help enhance this presence. 

Teaching presence is crucial, impacting the other two presences. It involves facilitating learning, providing timely feedback, and setting up avenues for constructive discussion. The teacher’s role in an online course extends beyond delivering content; they are essential in nurturing a conducive environment for learning and engagement. Consequently, the interactions of these three presences help in creating a robust online learning community. 

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