Community of Inquiry and Transactional Distance Theory
As a learner in an online course facing over 400 unread discussion posts, I feel the isolation discussed in TDT and a lack of social presence.
We have a good deal of text based communications, D2L discussion forums and Twitter, but we lack the smaller group discussion and the synchronous, oral communication, which would create stronger connections between learners.
Text communication is ideal for reflection and higher level thinking, but our unique personalities, our humour become blurred, also lost in the depth of discussions. D2L’s discussion forums lack tools found in social media, placing limits on how we express ourselves. Twitter has proven to be a better platform for sharing and expression.
A better mix of text communication and oral via synchronous video discussions in small groups would be beneficial and lessen the feeling of distance and increase the social engagement moving towards better establishing COI.