Technology and Inquiry-Based Instructional Methods: A Design Case in Student-Centered Online Course Design

Main Article Content

Mary Jo Dondlinger


Although online course design is no longer new, few design cases describe the development of entire courses based on principles of student-centered learning design. This design case chronicles the context, design challenges, and successes and failures of a graduate course on Technology & Inquiry-based Instructional Methods for an online master’s program in educational technology at a regional university in the southwestern United States.


Download data is not yet available.

Article Details

How to Cite
Dondlinger, M. J. (2021). Technology and Inquiry-Based Instructional Methods: A Design Case in Student-Centered Online Course Design. International Journal of Designs for Learning, 12(2), 93–110.
Author Biography

Mary Jo Dondlinger, Texas A&M University Commerce

Mary Jo Dondlinger is an associate professor of educational technology at Texas A&M University Commerce. Her research interests revolve around instructional methods and technologies that support dispositions for critical and creative thinking, such as open-mindedness, self-direction, critical curiosity, and intellectual courage. She is particularly interested in the role that problem-based learning, games, and making can play in supporting development of these dispositions, as well as critical and creative problem solving.


AAC&U. (2014). VALUE: Valid assessment of learning in undergraduate education. Retrieved from
Albanese, M. A., & Mitchell, S. (1993). Problem-based learning: A review of literature on its outcomes and implementation issues. Academic Medicine, 68(1), 52-81.
Association for Educational Communications & Technology. (2008). Definition. In A. Januszewski and M. Molenda (Eds.), Educational technology: A definition with commentary. New York: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
Boling, E. (2010). The Need for Design Cases: Disseminating Design Knowledge. International Journal of Designs for Learning, (1) 1. 1-8. Retrieved from
Chickering, A. W. & Gamson, Z. F. (1987, March). Seven principles for good practice in undergraduate education. AAHE Bulletin, p. 3-7.
Collins, A. & Halverson, R. (2009). Rethinking education in the age of technology: The digital revolution and schooling in America. New York: Teachers College Press.
Costa, A. L. & Kallick, B. (2008). Learning and leading with habits of mind: 16 essential characteristics for success. Alexandria, VA: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.
Deakin Crick, R., Broadfoot, P., & Claxton, G. (2004). Developing an effective lifelong learning inventory: The ELLI Project." Assessment in Education Principles Policy and Practice. 11(3). doi: 10.1080/0969594042000304582
Foundation for Critical Thinking. (2013). Valuable intellectual traits. Retrieved from

Frisby, B. N., Limperos, A. M., Record, R. A., Downs, E., & Kercsmar, S. E.(2013). Students’ perceptions of social presence: Rhetorical and relational goals across three mediated instructional designs. MERLOT Journal on Online Learning and Teaching, 9(4), 468-480. Retrieved from
Gallileo Educational Network. (2013). Discipline-based inquiry rubric. Retrieved from
Hare, W. (2011). Helping open-mindedness flourish. Journal of Thought, 46(1/2), 9-20.
Hare, W. (2009). What open-mindedness requires. Skeptical Inquirer, 33(2), 36-39.
Hare, W. (2002). Teaching and the attitude of open-mindedness. Journal of Educational Administration and Foundations, 16(2), 103-24.
Hu, Q. & Johnston, E. (2012). Using a wiki-based course design to create a student-centered learning environment: strategies and lessons. Journal of Public Affairs Education, 18(3), 493-512.
Hu, X. C. and Meyen, E. L. (2011). A comparison of student and instructor preferences for design and pedagogy feature in postsecondary online courses. International Journal of Online Pedagogy and Course Design, 1(3), 1-17. doi: 10.4018/ijopcd.2011070101
Ice, P., Curtis, R., Phillips, P., & Wells, J. (2007). Using asynchronous audio feedback to enhance teaching presence and students' sense of community. Journal of Asynchronous Learning Networks, 11(2), 3-25.
ISTE. (2008). NETS for Teachers. Retrieved 2/14/2014 from
Jonassen, D. (2011). Supporting problem-solving in PBL. Interdisciplinary Journal of Problem-Based Learning, 5(2), 95-119. doi: 10.7771/1541-5015.1256
Jonassen, D. & Hung, W. (2008). All problems are not created equal: Implications for problem-based learning. Interdisciplinary Journal of Problem-Based Learning, 2(2), 6-28. doi: 10.7771/1541-5015.1080
Jonassen, D. H. (1999). Designing constructivist learning environments. In C.M. Reigeluth (Ed.), Instructional design theories and models: A new paradigm of instructional theory (Vol. 2, pp. 215–239). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Publishers.
Land, S. M., Hannafin, M. J., & Oliver, K. (2012). Student-centered learning environments: Foundations, assumptions, and design. In Jonassen, D. & Land, S. (Eds.), Student-centered learning environments: Theoretical foundations of learning environments. New York: Routledge.
Lee, W. J. and Ke, F. (2013). The design of authentic inquiry for online knowledge-constructive interaction. International Journal of Online Pedagogy and Course Design, 3(2), 25-39. Doi: 10.4018/ijopcd.2013040102.
Norman, G. R., & Schmidt, H. G. (1992). The psychological basis of problem-based learning: A review of the evidence. Academic Medicine, 67(9), 557-565.
Parchoma, G. (2003). Learner-centered instructional design and development: Two examples of success. Journal of Distance Education, 18(2), 35-60.
Park, S. H., & Ertmer, P. A. (2007). Impact of problem-based learning (PBL) on teachers’ beliefs regarding technology use. Journal of Research on Technology in Education, 40(2), 247-267.
Prince, M. J. & Felder, R. M. (2006). Inductive teaching and learning methods: Definitions, comparisons, and research bases. Journal of Engineering Education, 95(2), 123-138.
Project Zero. (n.d.) I Visible thinking routines. Retrieved from
Richey, R. C., Klein, J. D., & Tracey, M. W. (2011). The instructional design knowledge base: Theory, research, and practice. New York: Routledge.
Ritchhart, R. (2002). Intellectual character: What it is, why it matters, and how to get it. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.
Selingo, J. (2013). College unbound: The future of American higher education and what it means for students. New York: Hougton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.
Savery, J. R., & Duffy, T. M. (1995). Problem based learning: An instructional model and its constructivist framework. Educational Technology, 35, 31-38.
Stephenson, N. (n.d.). Introduction to inquiry-based learning. Retrieved from