Students are used to connecting through social-media channels. They can communicate with friends and family whenever, and wherever, they like. They freely share their thoughts and adventures. And even though the experience doesn’t replicate that of being together in person, they feel as though they’re staying involved and in touch with their connections.

But when it comes to online learning, some feel disconnected from their instructors and fellow students. They learn the skills and concepts their instructors teach and present, but they don’t feel as though they have a good sense of the others who are participating the learning process alongside them. Likewise, the instructor may seem distant or unknowable… at least in comparison to one teaching within a traditional physical classroom setting.

Most online instructors do want students to form a learning community, but some struggle to do so. Do you believe that a strong community of learners can develop in an online class? Or, is the prospect of developing cohesion, collaboration, and community simply too challenging? Share your opinions in today’s survey—and continue the discussion in the comments.