Social Presence in Online Learning
Multiple Perspectives on Practice and Research

Paper: 978 1 62036 509 0 / $35.00
Due: May 2017  

Cloth: 978 1 62036 508 3 / $95.00
Due: May 2017  

Lib E-Book: 978 1 62036 510 6 / $95.00 Due: May 2017  
About Library E-Book


E-Book: 978 1 62036 511 3 / $27.99
Due: May 2017  

Publisher: Stylus Publishing
256 pp., 7" x 10"
20 figures

Series: Online Learning and Distance Education
Social presence continues to emerge as a key factor for successful online and blended learning experiences. It is commonly described as the degree to which online participants feel connected to one another. Understanding social presence with its critical connections to community-building, retention, and learning outcomes allows faculty and instructional designers to better support and engage students. This volume, Social Presence in Online Learning, addresses the evolution of social presence with three distinct perspectives, outlines the relevant research, and focuses on practical strategies that can immediately impact the teaching and learning experience. These strategies include creating connections to build community, applying content to authentic situations, integrating a careful mix of tools and media, leveraging reflective and interactive opportunities, providing early and continuous feedback, designing with assessment in mind, and encouraging change in small increments. Because student satisfaction and motivation plays a key role in retention rates and because increased social presence often leads to enriched learning experiences, it is advantageous to mindfully integrate social presence into learning environments.

Social Presence in Online Learning brings together eminent scholars in the field to distinguish among three different perspectives of social presence and to address how these viewpoints immediately inform practice. This important volume:

• Provides an overview of the evolution of social presence, key findings from social presence research, and practical strategies that can improve the online and blended learning experience
• Differentiates three distinct perspectives on social presence and explains the ideas and models that inform these perspectives
• Explores specific ways in which social presence relates to course satisfaction, retention, and outcomes
• Offers practical implications and ready-to-use techniques that are applicable to multiple disciplines
• Introduces current research on social presence by prominent researchers in the field with direct inferences to the practice of online and blended learning
• Looks at future directions for social presence

Social Presence in Online Learning is appropriate for practitioners, researchers and academics involved in any level of online learning program design, course design, instruction, support, and leadership as well as for graduate students studying educational technology, technology-enhanced learning, and online and blended learning. It brings together multiple perspectives on social presence from the most influential scholars in the field to help shape the future of online and blended learning.

Table of Contents:
Part One: Introduction and Background
1) Multiple Perspectives on Social Presence in Online Learning: An Introduction to This Volume—
2) Social Presence: Understanding Connections Among Definitions, Theory, Measurements, and Practice

Part Two: Social Presence as Technology Facilitated
3) Understanding Social Presence as Technologically Facilitated: Introduction to Part Two—
4) Social Presence and Communication Technologies: Tales of Trial and Error—
5) Evolvements of Social Presence in Open and Networked Learning Environments—

Part Three: Social Presence as Learner Perceptions
6) Understanding Social Presence as Learners’ Perceptions: Introduction to Part Three—
7) Social Presence and the Community of Inquiry Framework—
8) Social Presence and Student Success: Retention, Satisfaction, and Evolving Expectations—
9) Instructor Social Presence: Learners' Needs and a Neglected Component of the Community of Inquiry Framework—
10) Creating Social Cues through Self-Disclosures, Stories, and Paralanguage: The Importance of Modeling High Social Presence Behaviors in Online Courses—
11) Cultural Perspectives on Social Presence: Research and Practical Guidelines for Online Design—

Part Four: Social Presence as a Critical Literacy
12) Understanding Social Presence as a Critical Literacy: Introduction to Part Four—
13) Making Learning Relevant and Meaningful: Integrating Social Presence into Faculty Professional Development Programs—
14) Blending Face-to-Face and Online Instruction to Disrupt Learning, Inspire Reflection, and Create Space for Innovation—
15) Personalized Learning to Meet Needs of Diverse Learners—
16) Overcoming Isolation Online: Practical Strategies to Enhance Social Presence in Practice—

Section V: The Future of Social Presence for Online Learning
17) Shared Metacognition, Emerging Technologies, and the New Educational Ecosystem—
18) The Future of Social Presence: Advancing Research, Uniting the Perspectives, and Allowing for Innovation in Practice—Aimee L. Whiteside, Karen Swan, and Amy Garrett Dikkers

Chapter 2

Reviews & Endorsements:
"Social Presence in Online Learning is of great importance to those in the field of online and blended learning. The insights provided in this book make it clear that social presence represents an essential element of any collaborative learning experience – online and otherwise. The comprehensive treatment of the social presence construct makes this book an key resource for those interested in online learning.

My congratulations to Aimee Whiteside, Amy Dikkers, and Karen Swan."
- D. Randy Garrison, Professor Emeritus , University of Calgary
"Social presence is widely recognized as an important strategy in developing online and blended learning environments. The high quality research and practical applications explored in this book inform educators and ensure that social presence is well-understood. My congratulations to the authors for illuminating the intricacies and nuances of this critical pedagogical approach."
- Anthony G. Picciano, Professor and Executive Officer of the PhD Program in Urban Education , Graduate Center of the City University of New York and Hunter College