Establishing and maintaining a welcoming and inclusive learning environment is one of the most difficult challenges of online teaching and training. Years of research tells us that social presence is vital to successful learning in the online environment. But how does social presence happen? Not by chance!

Participants in this session will first examine the necessary ingredients of an online learning community, including social, teaching, and cognitive presence. You’ll then explore a telling case example that illustrates how instructor presence, or lack thereof, impacts the learning experience. Finally, you’ll learn a process for building and maintaining an online learning community for differing goals, and guidelines for addressing the most common learning-community issues.

In this session, you will learn:

  • The essential elements of an online learning community
  • The process for building and maintaining community
  • Practical guidelines for a variety of community-related issues
  • About necessary online instructor behaviors and strategies