Instructor and students' attitudes towards rapport building in online courses
This study explores what rapport building practices online instructors implement and what are the attitudes of post-secondary students towards rapport building with the instructor and other students in an online environment. How post-secondary students value rapport building with instructors or fellow students in online courses was also studied. The research population for this study was students and faculty at a technical institute in Western Canada. Semi-structured interviews were conducted
... ws were conducted with two students and one instructor with experience in online courses. The research participants were asked about their personal experiences and attitudes towards relationship building in online courses. The participants were also asked to compare their online courses experience to that with their face to face course experience. The findings from this study were consistent that found in prior studies on rapport building in online courses. The instructor and students had positive attitudes towards developing rapport in the online environment, although rapport between student and instructor was perceived to be more important than that between students. Rapport building activities were more common at the start of the semester in online courses. Synchronous video was used to promote discussions in the class but tools such as Google Hangouts or Skype might be more convenient and easier to use for building rapport between students or between students and instructors.