Guide To Teaching and Learning

Student Social Interaction

From Randy Garrison’s Community of Inquiry (CoI) model we discuss Social presence: the readiness to engage with and build connections with other students. It’s about students getting to know their peers as people, instead of thinking of them (and you) as tiny squares on a screen. To promote this, incorporate opportunities for students to share details about their lived experiences:

  • Ask students to share introductions during the first weeks of the class, whether synchronous or asynchronous.
  • Consider creating a thread within Canvas for casual discussion that doesn’t necessarily relate directly to the course material. 
  • Encourage social engagement outside of your course:
    • Direct students to New School services and resources 
    • Ask whether they’ve ever attended Public Programs or Student Leadership Initiative events
    • This could spur conversation that channels back into your classroom and foster connection that keeps students engaged.

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Graduates and Adult Learners

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