CCE Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


College of Computing and Engineering


Martha M. Snyder

Committee Member

Laurie Dringus

Committee Member

Ling Wang


community of inquiry, instructional activities, instructional design, learning and instructional design theory, online learning, practical inquiry model


The Community of Inquiry (CoI) framework is one of the more widely used frameworks supporting online learning effectiveness. While there has been extensive research on the development and validation of the CoI framework and survey, less attention has been devoted toward implementation of a CoI and how practitioners design instructional strategies and activities that support this type of constructivist online learning environment.

The research literature about the CoI along with phenomenological interviews with expert designers guided the creation of three products: the Community of Inquiry (CoI) Instructional Strategies and Activities Guide, Community of Inquiry (CoI) Instructional Strategies and Activities Job Aid, and the CoI Design Framework. These products were validated by an expert panel using a three-round Delphi study.

As an original contribution in the field of computing technology in education, this design and development research has theoretical and practical significance. First, it serves as a springboard for further understanding and discussion of the gap between the CoI as a constructivist framework and the more prescriptive world of instructional design. Second, it expands the guidance for practitioners who desire to create a community of inquiry in an online learning environment.