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The Community of Inquiry and Emotional Presence

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Adult Learning Volume 29, Number 2, ISSN 1045-1595


The community of inquiry (COI) model identifies elements which are fundamental to a successful online learning experience, namely, teaching presence, cognitive presence, and social presence. The model has received empirical support as a useful framework for understanding the online learning experience. A limitation of the model is its understanding of emotional presence which, according to the COI model, is seen solely in terms of emotional expression, which, in turn, is a part of social presence. Emotional intelligence would support a much broader role for emotional presence in learning and embrace to a larger extent how emotions play out in the learning process, than singularly "emotional expression" in the original COI framework. Thus, the article first presents a conceptualization of emotional presence in terms of emotional intelligence. Second, it discusses the relationship of emotional presence to teaching presence and how teaching presence may foster emotional presence in learners. Finally, how emotional presence in teaching presence may foster social presence and cognitive presence in learners and lead to successful learning is presented.


Majeski, R.A., Stover, M. & Valais, T. (2018). The Community of Inquiry and Emotional Presence. Adult Learning, 29(2), 53-61. Retrieved March 18, 2019 from .

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