‘We’ve become a little family now’: Maximising rapport in an accelerated, fully online learning environment

Samantha J. Newell, Emily Adam

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference PaperOtherpeer-review


Online learning spaces are generally considered low-interaction environments. The loss of synchronous time in an online course is balanced by additional flexibility. As such, there are limited opportunities to build rapport with students. This is especially true for online programs that are also accelerated. However, students still view opportunities to engage with educators and peers as extremely important. As a result, there is a need to identify strategies to maximise rapport building within a limited time frame. A Thematic Analysis of data sources relevant to teaching and learning activities in the Monash University Graduate Diploma of Psychology is presented. Four themes emerged and included ‘humanising’ the learning space, fostering opportunities for student-to-student interaction, reducing the power imbalance between teacher and student, and maintaining rapport beyond individual subjects or units. The individual strategies that were employed are discussed in detail. These findings provide a resource for educators to increase rapport within an online learning environment
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationReconnecting relationships through technology
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the 39th International Conference on Innovation, Practice and Research in the Use of Educational Technologies in Tertiary Education, ASCILITE 2022 in Sydney.
EditorsStephanie Wilson, Natasha Arthars, Dewa Wardak, Pippa Yeoman, Eszter Kalman, Danny Y.T. Liu
Place of PublicationAustralia
PublisherAustralasian Society for Computers in Learning in Tertiary Education
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - 18 Nov 2022
EventAnnual Conference of the Australasian Society for Computers in Learning in Tertiary Education 2022: Reconnecting relationships through technology - The University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia
Duration: 4 Dec 20227 Dec 2022
Conference number: 39th


ConferenceAnnual Conference of the Australasian Society for Computers in Learning in Tertiary Education 2022
Abbreviated titleASCILITE 2022
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