Video: Fully Online Learning at Royal Roads
About the Video
EILAB Director, Dr. Roland van Oostveen recently presented the Fully Online Learning Community (FOLC) model at Royal Roads University. As the author of FOLC, Dr. van Oostveen’s research investigates dimensions of social interaction in online learning communities, digital competencies in online learning, problem-based learning (PBL), and the development of effective online learning environments. As Director of the EILAB, Dr. van Oostveen is building an international research network around the EILAB for exploring cross-cultural applications of the model.
About the Fully Online Learning Community Model
Information and communication technologies have profoundly influenced formal learning at institutions of higher education. In the U.S. in 2013, approximately 33% of higher education students took at least one online course. In the province of Ontario, Canada, Contact North, a Government of Ontario funded non-profit organization lists just over 20,000 online courses available through the province’s colleges and universities.
The Fully Online Learning Community (FOLC) model was developed by Dr. van Oostveen in collaboration with a team of researchers at the Faculty of Education at the University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT), a mid-sized, Canadian technology-oriented university. This transactional model was originally conceived as a modification of the Community of Inquiry (CoI) model. It builds on the work done by UOIT’s EILab research hub, an international research community and a digital observatory well-equipped for observing human-computer-human interactions in contexts of digital learning. It also builds upon the General Technology Competency and Use (GTCU) framework for conceptualizing and measuring digital competencies for online learning. FOLC has served as the guiding model for a fully online Bachelor of Arts in Educational Studies and Digital Technologies program (BAESDT) at UOIT, and it is offered as an alternative to the Community of Inquiry model. Indeed, FOLC’s democratic orientation has shown tremendous success in reducing transactional distance (Moore, 1993), incorporating newcomers into vibrant learning communities (Lave & Wenger, 1991), and supporting cross-cultural learning.