An investigation into the community of inquiry of blended classrooms by a Faculty Learning Community
David A. Wicks, School of Education, United States ; Baine B. Craft, School of Psychology, Family, and Community, United States ; Geri N. Mason, School of Business and Economics, United States ; Kristine Gritter, School of Education, United States ; Kevin Bolding, Engineering Department, United States
Internet and Higher Education Volume 25, Number 1, ISSN 1096-7516 Publisher: Elsevier Ltd
A Faculty Learning Community (FLC) comprised of six professors representing different disciplines came together to study, develop, and teach blended learning courses. As an FLC, the researchers sought to evaluate student perceptions of the blended learning courses, measured using the Community of Inquiry (CoI) survey, and how these differed across the courses taught. In addition to this objective, a secondary objective of how the experience of learning to design blended learning courses in an FLC differed across the faculty was also explored. This exploratory case study found evidence to suggest that student perceptions of a blended course, as measured by the CoI framework, can be used to determine differences in students' blended learning experiences. The results of the study also suggest that perceived differences in blended learning experiences varied by discipline, highlighting an important area for future research experiments. An additional research outcome was that an FLC may be a useful form of faculty development when correctly implemented. For example, participating faculty benefited from participation in an FLC when they received helpful advice on promising practices and encouragement when experiencing instructional or technical challenges.
Wicks, D.A., Craft, B.B., Mason, G.N., Gritter, K. & Bolding, K. (2015). An investigation into the community of inquiry of blended classrooms by a Faculty Learning Community. Internet and Higher Education, 25(1), 53-62. Elsevier Ltd.