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Dec 21, 2017

A community approach to learning

The National Center for the Study of Adult Learning and Literacy (NCSALL), defines a cohort as a “community formed around a common learning endeavor, where students support one another in their academic and cognitive development and emotional wellbeing.”


How does this apply to COETAIL?


Learning in the COETAIL program occurs in cohorts and, according to our graduates, is one of our biggest strengths. At the start of the COETAIL program, you’ll be placed in a cohort with educators from around the world, instantly giving you access to a new, supportive community focused on student learning. Your cohort and instructor will stick with you during your entire 18-month COETAIL learning journey.


Haven’t learned in a cohort setting before? We understand that you may be hesitant to enroll in a program in which learning happens in a completely new way. However, we believe that our community approach to learning, especially in an online setting, helps you build skills that you can transfer to both your professional and personal settings.


Benefits of cohort learning according to the NCSALL are:

  1. Communication skills – cohorts help with interactions at school, work, and home
  2. Learning how to learn – demonstrating behaviors to one another
  3. Social Culture - or feeling "comfortable" when asking questions
  4. Perspective - or recognizing and appreciating different views

COETAIL is based on sound pedagogical foundations that aim to help participants learn the material quickly and effectively within a cohort setting:

  • Connectivism Theory
  • Learning Communities
  • Mastery Learning
  • Efficacy of Online Learning

We believe that the social nature of the COETAIL program supports participants throughout their online learning journey. During COETAIL you will enhance your practice through immediate application of your learning in your context, reflection via blogging, and building a community with educators around the world.


You’ll learn with and from the other participants in your COETAIL cohort as well as your instructor. Cohort members regularly communicate by commenting on each other’s reflective blog posts, which are designed to showcase learning and promote critical thinking in a transparent, public environment. Rich in ideas, suggestions and encouragement, the dialogue that occurs in these blog comments helps participants to expand their thinking by viewing topics from multiple points of view and be more open to feedback.


A 2016 participant reflected, “Being connected to others digitally is an amazing way to learn and share. The content was great but the sharing and connections were fantastic.”


Like we mentioned in the previous blog post, enrolling in COETAIL immediately makes you an important part of our COETAIL community of over 1000 educators. You might have noticed that our hashtag, #COETAIL, is active 24/7 on Twitter. In addition to this powerful network, you will also have access to our private groups and forums where you can make deeper connections with current COETAILers and grads.


Tune in next week for a preview of the COETAIL courses, testimonials from COETAIL graduates, and information about how to register for our upcoming cohort beginning in the new year!

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