Original Research

Using Community of Inquire to explore teachers’ responses to a reading-for-meaning course

Janet L. Condy
Reading & Writing | Vol 14, No 1 | a393 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/rw.v14i1.393 | © 2023 Janet L. Condy | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 03 July 2022 | Published: 12 April 2023

About the author(s)

Janet L. Condy, Department of Research, Faculty of Education, Cape Peninsula University of Technology, Cape Town, South Africa


Background: Although one of the most significant educational goals is to teach learners to comprehend written texts, the Global Education Monitoring Report (UNESCO 2021) identified that many children and adolescents have not acquired the minimum proficiency in reading even at the end of their secondary school career. South African literacy rates have remained with approximately 78% of Grade 4 learners unable to answer basic literal questions.

Objectives: To explore teachers’ responses to an 18 h online course on reading for meaning for Grade 4–7 teachers, using the Community of Inquire (CoI) framework.

Method: An interpretive paradigm, using a qualitative approach and a case study design, was used for this 18 h online study which was conducted between February and March 2022. Ten teachers were purposively selected for this research article.

Results: After inductively and deductively analysing the data collected from the post questionnaire survey and the online Telegram application comments, the teachers’ responses to the three CoI presences are presented.

Conclusion: When reflecting on the conceptualisation of using the CoI framework, the social presence dominated. The teaching presence became important when the teachers reflected on their teaching experiences. The cognitive presence then interacted with both the teaching and social presences as the teachers began to be more aware of their own changes in how they taught.

Contribution: The study found that using the CoI framework was appropriate for understanding the teachers responses to an online course for reading-for-meaning.


Community of Inquiry framework; comprehension strategies; critical thinking; online; qualitative; professional development


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