When you join an online course, you become part of what is known as a Community of Inquiry and you take on an important role in this online learning environment.

What is the role of your instructor in this learning environment?  Your online instructor provides the teaching presence to create design significant learning experiences for you and your fellow students.  Instructors also thoughtfully facilitate the content that will support your learning in the class. They also direct you by answering questions and challenging your assumptions to help you grow in your knowledge and skills.

Online instructor roles: Design, facilitation, direction
Image credit: Christina Page

In online classrooms, your instructor takes on the following roles:

Learning from an Instructor Online

What can you do to learn effectively from your instructor in an online course?

  1. Actively engage with the resources that your instructor provides on the course Moodle site. These have been carefully chosen to support your learning. Take notes while watching videos or completing readings.
  2. Watch for any office hours that your instructor offers. Your instructors may offer specific times each week to meet for video conferences. Take advantage of these opportunities.
  3. Communicate with your instructor regularly. Learn more about how to communicate with email on this page.
  4. Engage with feedback. When your instructor provides feedback on an assignment, thoughtfully read it in order to identify your strengths, and make plans to further develop your skills. If your instructor responds to a forum post with questions or thoughts, take the time to carefully consider their suggestions and reply.