Fostering a Community of Inquiry (COI) in Developing CoP
Just to juxtapose the CoP model, I recall Garrison and Anderson’s Community of Inquiry (COI) framework. I thought of how the CoP model may share elements of COI , while maintaining the more informal, unstructured development inherent in building a community of practice.
In the informal learning set up, developing cognitive as well as social presence are core elements in fostering learning communities. The strategy for facilitating the knowledge creation process slightly differs, and rather than promoting ‘teaching presence’ I would think it would foster ‘mentoring presence’ . Looking at adult continuing education context, the role of the facilitator is to coax higher-level thinking via projects and team work. pinoytechblog is a great example of how blog authors can provide mentoring presence. Their tag line: the Philippines’ premier technology blog. The blog authors are presented as experts (note the section “About the Team”, listing their credentials) in their defined field. People would leave comments, and authors would engage them in snippets of discussion. The challenge is how the authors can take advantage of this blog feature to lead readers to transform their newly acquired knowledge into real learning–without sounding preachy. However, if you’ve read a lot of blogs (I’m sure you have), you would notice that many blogs wish to maintain a light-hearted tone even if the subject is a thousand kilos in seriousness. It gives this aura of approachability to the blog and the blog author.
Do share your project here if you feel it helped you build a Community of Inquiry/CoP.