I think this is very valuable and this idea of “community of enquiry” links closely to the idea of engagement and sharing of life stories which makes learning real and ïnternalised”. One of the key tenants of outcomes based education. Thanks, this gives a good structure to the process but it is an area often neglected in training in my experience.

Instructional Design Fusions

Lipman (1991) is credited with the articulating the idea of a “community of inquiry” (COI).  In a COI, “students listen to one another with respect, build on one another’s ideas, challenge one another to supply reasons for otherwise unsupported opinions, assist each other in drawing inferences from what has been said, and seek to identify one another’s assumptions” (Garrison & Anderson, 2003, p.27, citing Lipman, 1991, p. 15). The idea of combining learning and community is firmly rooted in constructivist and social learning principles.

What makes for a successful COI?

According to Garrison, Anderson, & Archer (2000), three intersecting presences combine in a successful COI:

Cognitive presence: Learners construct meaning through critical discourse and metacognitve approaches (Anderson, 2007).  It requires students to:

  • Recognize a problem (a triggering event)
  • Explore possible solutions (through brainstorming, communication, divergent thinking)
  • Integrate findings (convergent thinking)
  • Resolve the problem (by applying, testing, and defending possible solutions)

Social presence: “The ability of participants in the [COI] to…

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