Title

From Distance Education to Communities of Inquiry: A Review of Historical Developments

Department

Inclusive Education

Document Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date

2013

Abstract

The purpose of this chapter is to explain the role and place of the Community of Inquiry (CoI) framework within the history of distance education. The review of the history reveals two important factors for changes in distance education: the effect of leading learning theories of each era and technological advancements. Distance education has moved from a behavioristic, teacher–centered, correspondence study concept, first to an independent learning model, and then to the current student-centered, socio-constructivist and community-based online learning. In this latest era, the post-modernist age, the CoI framework provides online instructors with a functional framework for designing and teaching their courses more effectively. A review of literature as shared in this chapter has also shown CoI to be a robust framework for research.