A Comparative Structural Equation Modeling Investigation of the Relationships among Teaching, Cognitive and Social Presence
Keywords:Community of inquiry framework, teaching presence, social presence, cognitive presence, structural equation modeling
AbstractThe present study investigated the relationships among teaching, cognitive, and social presence through several structural equation models to see which model would better fit the data. To this end, the present study employed and compared several different structural equation models because different models could fit the data equally well. Among the models compared, the results indicated that the model with cognitive presence as a full mediator and the model with social presence as a partial mediator could achieve an equally satisfactory data fit. This conclusion may depend on the level of the presences: The present results indicated a statistically higher level of teaching presence than cognitive and social presence as well as a statistically higher level of cognitive presence compared to social presence. The results further suggested that teaching presence could either have a direct or indirect relationship with cognitive presence thereby increasing it without or with social presence as a mediator between teaching and cognitive presence. The results further suggested that teaching presence efforts spent on increasing cognitive presence can function directly, which may also promote social presence, and indirectly through social presence. Further research comparing different possible structural equation models of the relationships among the presences in different learning contexts is warranted.
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