Interpersonal Interaction in Online Learning: Experienced Online Instructors' Perceptions of Influencing Factors

Volume, Issue - Date: 
Volume 16, Issue 4 - June 2012
Cindy S. York, Northern Illinois University
Jennifer C. Richardson, Purdue University
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online, interaction, interpersonal interaction, learning effectiveness

A multitude of factors influence interpersonal interaction between students and instructors in an online course. This study examines perceptions of six experienced online instructors to determine factors they believe increase interaction among their students and between the students and instructor of online courses. The end result is an inventory of strategies that can be used by novice and experienced online instructors alike to impact interpersonal interaction in online courses. Factors include group work, course environment, model use, community, discussion question type and assessment, feedback type and medium, immediacy behaviors, discourse guidelines, and instructor participation.