Date of Conferral


Date of Award

April 2024


Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)




Nancy Williams


As nursing faculty transition to online education, faculty roles and responsibilities have shifted from face-to-face to online courses. Nursing faculty need to implement instructional approaches that are relevant and engaging to online nursing students, as this leads to student learning. The problem is undergraduate online nursing faculty are inconsistently implementing instructional approaches when engaging with online nursing students. The purpose of this basic qualitative study was to explore nursing faculty’s perceptions of engagement approaches to establish social, cognitive, and teaching presence in online nursing courses. The study’s conceptual framework was Garrison’s community of inquiry framework. The framework was used to describe social, cognitive, and teaching presence implementation in online courses. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with ten undergraduate online nursing faculty who teach online nursing courses part-time or full-time in the United States. Data were analyzed using a deductive thematic coding process, resulting in multiple emergent themes: faculty engagement approaches, student reflections on their learning, and faculty design approaches. It is recommended that online nursing faculty expand participant criteria to include nursing students’ perspectives on how social, cognitive, and teaching presence was included in their online nursing courses. Future studies could include students from different countries and provide training for faculty for group work and student collaborations. This study may contribute to positive social change by providing online nursing faculty with greater awareness of how to plan and implement relevant and engaging online approaches, ultimately improving student learning experiences.

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