For me, Topic 4 was a kind of summary of what we had worked out together over the past few weeks. Gradually, I was able to classify every single edited topic and the related feelings.  The discussion with the Community of Inquiry (CoI) model was the most plausible.

Garrison, Anderson, and Archer (2000) constructed a conceptual framework that describes critical factors in online learning. The Community of Inquiry (CoI) model is based on the perspective that complex, deeper level learning occurs through a community of learners who participate in reflective thinking and discussion (Garrison, Cleveland-Innes, and Fung, 2010).

Community of Inquiry model by The Community of Inquiry

The CoI framework from Garrison, Anderson and Archer is built upon three dimensions:

  1. Teaching presence
    • Design of the course
    • Promoting critical discourse
  2. Social presence
    • Be part of a learning group
    • Live mutually trusting relationship
  3. Cognitive presence
    • Through reflection and discourse, new insight and acquire competences

The Dimension Cognitive presence is divided into four phases:

  1. Triggering Event: A trigger event motivates the participants for a discourse (e.g. case study, problem description). This can trigger curiosity or irritation.
  2. Exploration: Information search and exchange to understand the problem. Previous experience can be incorporated, and alternatives are discussed.
  3. Integration: Information is combined, and solutions are developed. This creates a deeper understanding of the connections.
  4. Resolution: New insights and ideas are applied. New questions and a new discourse can arise.

Phases three and four require more time and well-considered student support. In principle, higher demands are placed on all participants (teacher and students). A very good instruction design (tasks) is required. However, a very good pedagogical and professional support and feedback from all participants are also decisive for the transition of the discourse to higher phases.

We have created a timeline for designing a course in our PBL group. In each dimension/phase we have put together steps to reach the goal and challenges you have to anticipate. Even in this work, which is based on theory, the description of phases two to four of the cognitive presence was as more demanding as the first two dimensions of the CoI model.

Joop van Schie (2008) developed a concept map of community of inquiry, which presents the relationships of dimensions and phases in more detail and at the same time has added how-to-do notes.

I would now be motivated to plan and execute a course according to this script and then raise the level of teaching presence, social presence and cognitive presence with the CoI. To do this, however, the university library would have to be able to work intensively with a module-responsible course of study. In addition, a German-language version of the Community of Inquiry Survey Instrument would be an advantage for the survey. Until then, I will design our mini-offers in the best possible way with my new knowledge.


Garrison, D. R., Anderson, T., & Archer, W. (2000). Critical Inquiry in a Text-Based Environment: Computer Conferencing in Higher Education. The Internet and Higher Education, 2(2-3), 87–105. Retrieved from

Garrison, D. R., Cleveland-Innes, M., & Fung, T. S. (2010). Exploring causal relationships among teaching, cognitive and social presence: Student perceptions of the community of inquiry framework. The Internet and Higher Education, 13(1), 31–36.

Van Schie, J. (2008). Concept map of Community of Inquiry. Retrieved from

Design for online and blended learning