Thinking Collaboratively : Learning in a Community of Inquiry book cover
1st Edition

Thinking Collaboratively
Learning in a Community of Inquiry

ISBN 9781138824324
Published June 12, 2015 by Routledge
158 Pages 3 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Thinking Collaboratively is a theoretical and practical guide to thinking and learning in deep and meaningful ways within purposeful communities of inquiry. Critical thinking has long been recognized as an important educational goal but, until now, has largely been conceived and operationalized as an individual attitude and ability. Increasingly, however, a more relevant and complete cognitive construct has been emerging: thinking collaboratively. Thinking collaboratively is the means to inquire, test, and apply new understandings, and to make sense of the information that bombards us continuously. In short, thinking collaboratively is required to flourish in our highly connected world and, in this book based on more than a decade of research, Garrison provides an essential introduction to this vital concept.

Table of Contents


Chapter 1: Introduction

    • Foundational Constructs
    • Technology
    • Critical thinking
    • The Community of Inquiry
    • Summary

Chapter 2: Thinking and Learning

    • Critical and Reflective Thinking
    • Collaborative Constructivism
    • Community and Collaboration
    • Collaboration and Competition
    • Metacognition and Regulation
    • Summary

Chapter 3: Technology and Thinking

    • Technological Innovations
    • Technology Enhanced Approaches
    • Summary

Chapter 4: A New Era

    • Distance Education
    • Campus-Based Education
    • Online Learning
    • Summary

Chapter 5: The Community of Inquiry

    • Communities of Inquiry
    • Inquiry
    • Deep Approaches to Learning
    • The Community of Inquiry Framework
    • Metacognition
    • Summary

Chapter 6: Community of Inquiry Research

    • A Coherent Framework
    • Social Presence
    • Cognitive presence
    • Teaching Presence
    • Shared Metacognition
    • Summary

Chapter 7: Principles of Practice

    • Principles
    • Design
    • Facilitation
    • Direction
    • Assessment
    • Summary

Chapter 8: Leading Collaboratively

    • Collaboration and Bureaucracy
    • Initiating and Sustaining Change
    • Faculty Development
    • Summary

Chapter 9: Conclusion

Appendix A: Community of Inquiry Survey Instrument

Appendix B: Shared Metacognition Survey Instrument



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D. Randy Garrison is a retired professor of the Werklund School of Education at the University of Calgary, Canada. Dr. Garrison has published extensively on teaching and learning in adult, higher, and distance education contexts. He has authored, co-authored, or edited eleven books and well over 100 refereed articles and chapters. He has also won several awards including the 2009 Sloan-C Award for Most Outstanding Achievement in Online Learning by an Individual.


"Thinking Collaboratively is the definitive book on thinking and learning through collaboration. Presenting theory along with specific and effective principles of practice, it is a must-read for all who seek to improve learning and instruction within the new paradigm."

Paul Gorsky, The Open University of Israel

"Thinking Collaboratively describes new ways to conceive of and support thinking and learning in a changing education environment—ways that ultimately allow learners to ‘flourish in our highly connected world.’ D. Randy Garrison provides comprehensive, leading-edge insights on teaching and learning. This recent contribution is a must-read for all those engaged in the evolving world of education."

Dr. Martha Cleveland-Innes, Professor and Chair, Centre for Distance Education, Athabasca University, Canada

"In this masterfully designed book, Randy Garrison has taken decades of his research, technology experimentations, model building, and instructor training programs and offers the reader with a new lens to think about the myriad theoretical and practical trends in education confronting each of us today. Fortunately, the realm of 'Thinking Collaboratively' emerges through it all to provide a base from which to discover, discuss, and reflect upon this exciting new learning and work-related world we now find ourselves in."

Curtis J. Bonk, Professor, Instructional Systems Technology Department, Indiana University Bloomington, USA

"Thinking Collaboratively: Learning in A Community of Inquiry is a must-read for all those involved in teaching and learning at all educational levels"

Saouma BouJaoude, The International Review of Education - Journal of Lifelong Learning