A Legacy of W.K. Kellogg

Three Types of Interaction in Teaching and Learning

Planning out the interactions your students will experience during the course will make those interactions more impactful. Moore (1989)[4] defines three types of interaction that occur during the education process: student-content interaction, student-instructor interaction, and student-student interaction.

Student-Content Interaction (S|C)

Students need to interact with instructional material, not just passively consume information. Plan ways to get your students to dig into textbooks, articles, videos, presentations and lectures. Content also occurs outside the class – students can talk to people, go on field trips, make their own observations, do experiments, and so forth.

Student-Instructor Interaction (S|I)

An instructor's role is more than just delivering instructional materials to students and grading their assignments. By developing a relationship with students the instructor facilitates the learning process and guides students through difficulties. Student-instructor interaction may take the form of in-office hours, virtual office hours, announcements, discussions, and other written or verbal feedback.

Student-Student Interaction (S|S)

Student to student interaction or engagement is crucial to learning because people construct meaning through social channels, i.e., talking to each other about what they are learning. In an online course, it’s especially important to carefully plan methods and opportunities for students to communicate and interact with each other, since they don’t see each other in person.