Larisa Olesova 

Clinical Assistant Professor

Larisa Olesova


(352) 273-4220



School of Teaching and Learning, PO Box 117048, Gainesville, FL 32611



Larisa Olesova is a Clinical Assistant Professor in the Educational Technology program. Her research areas are online teaching and learning, cognitive presence, and metacognition, learning analytics and social network analysis, instructional strategies, Community of Inquiry, collaborative learning, asynchronous learning environment, instructional design, faculty development, feedback, cross-cultural differences, and non-native speakers of English.

As a former instructional designer, she is interested in connecting research and practice to make online teaching and learning more effective and efficient. Her recent research on cognitive presence initiated the Online Learning special issue “Advances in Cognitive Presence” where Larisa served on the editorial board.


  • School of Teaching and Learning
  • Institute for Advanced Learning Technologies

Research Interests

Cognition, Collaboration and Teaming, Design and Development of Educational Technology Interventions, Educational / Instructional Design, Emerging Technologies, Evidence-based Practices, Online and Distance Education, Technology, Technology Trends and Issues


  • Ph.D. 2011 Purdue University Learning Design & Technology
  • M.A. 1999 Yakutsk State University (Russia) Education
  • BA/M.A. 1989 Yakutsk State University (Russia) English and Literature

Professional Appointments

  • 2012-2022: Senior Instructional Designer/Instructional Designer, Office of Digital Learning Stearns Center for Teaching and Learning, George Mason University
  • 2015-2022: Adjunct Faculty, Division of Learning Technologies, College of Education and Human Development, George Mason University
  • 2011-2012: Instructor/Co-Instructor, Department of Curriculum, and Instruction, College of Education, Purdue University
  • 2008-2011: Research Assistant, The Office of the Vice President for Information Technology, Information Technology at Purdue (ITaP), Department of Engineering Education, College of Engineering, Purdue University
  • 2006-2010: Teaching Assistant, Department of Curriculum, and Instruction, College of Education, Purdue University
  • 2004-2006: Online Teaching and Training Specialist, Distance Education Center, Yakutsk State University, Russia
  • 1991-2013: Assistant Professor/Associate Professor, Department of Foreign Languages, North-Eastern Federal University, Russia

Activities and Honors

  • 2022: AECT DDL Best Practice Award
  • 2022: AECT DDL Best Qualitative Paper, 2nd place
  • 2019: AECT DDL Journal Article Award, Quantitative 2nd place
  • 2018: 2018 Blackboard Catalyst Award for Teaching and Learning
  • 2018: Effective Practice Award: The Cooperative Mentorship Model, Online Learning Consortium (OLC former Sloan-C)
  • 2016: Effective Practice Award: Enhancing Cognitive Presence in Online Case Discussions with Question Based on the Practical Inquiry Model, Online Learning Consortium (OLC – former Sloan-C)
  • 2016: Award for Contribution to International Relations in recognition of the 70th Anniversary of the Department of Foreign Languages, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Republic Sakha (Yakutia), Russia
  • 2015: Effective Practice Award: Designing and Implementing Experiential Learning though Multimedia Based Activities and Blogging, Online Learning Consortium (OLC – former Sloan-C)
  • 2015: Distance Education Best Practice Award: Designing Effective Question Prompts to Enhance Cognitive Presence in Case-Based Online Discussions, Association for Educational Technology and Communications
  • 2012: Distance Education Best Practice Award: Asynchronous Embedded Audio Feedback for Online Learners, Division of Distance Learning, Association for Educational Technology and Communications
  • 2011: Fulbright English Teaching Assistant Program. Teaching English as a Foreign Language for Siberian Students Majoring in Science, Math, and Technology.
  • 2011: Outstanding Practice by a Student(s) of Educational Technology in an International Setting, International Division, Association for Educational Technology and Communications
  • 2010: TESOL, The International Research Foundation for English Language Education (TIRF) Doctoral Dissertation Grant (DDG)
  • 2010: Purdue University, College of Education, Frank B. De Bruicker Graduate Scholarship in Educational Technology. Research Award.
  • 2006: The Program of the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs Program
  • 2005: Award for Excellence in Teaching, Yakutsk State University, Russia
  • 2005: Award for the Best Resource Center, Yakutsk State University, Russia
  • 2005: Award for the Best Department, Yakutsk State University, Russia

Selected Grants

Teaching Excellence and Achievement (TEA)

  • Instructional Designer and Trainer
Funding Agency
  • International Research and Education Exchange Board Grant (IREX)
Project Period
  • 2009
Award Amount
  • $250,000

Teachers to Teachers: Language, Technology, Math, and Science Exchange Grant (LTMS Grant)

  • Instructional Designer and Trainer
Funding Agency
  • American Councils for International Education ACTR/ACCELS
Project Period
  • 2008
Award Amount
  • $57,000

Teachers to Teachers: Language, Technology, Math, and Science Exchange Grant (LTMS Grant)

  • Instructional Designer and Trainer
Funding Agency
  • American Councils for International Education ACTR/ACCELS
Award Amount
  • $100,000

Selected Publications

  • Kim, Y., & Olesova, L. (2022). Preparing online education in the post-COVID with a flexible design approach. Journal of Applied Instructional Design, 11(2), 10.51869/104
  • McCarron, G., & Olesova, L. (2021). An exploratory examination of student-led, asynchronous collaborative online discussions in fostering higher-order cognitive skills and ethical leadership learning. Online Learning Journal, 25(4), 198-219.
  • Merchant, Z. H., Sadaf, A., Olesova, L., & Wu, T. (2021). A systematic review of research questions in mixed methods studies in instructional design. Pedagogical Research, 6(4).
  • McCarron, G.P., Schmidt, G., Jackson, G., Mcnaughtan, J., Olesova, L., & Adams, T.T. (2020). Twenty-first century pedagogy for leadership development: Centering dialogic and digital approaches in leadership education. Journal of Leadership Studies Symposium Special Issue “Creating a National Leadership Education Research Agenda 2020-2023: Providing Strategic Direction for the Field of Leadership Education, 14(3).
  • Sadaf, A., & Olesova, L. (2020). Exploring the relationship between interaction and the structure of questions in online discussions using learning analytic. European Journal of Open, Distance and E-Learning, 23(1), pp.46-60.
  • Olesova, L., & Campbell, S. (2019). The impact of the cooperative mentorship model on faculty preparedness to develop online courses. Online Learning Journal, 23(4), 192-213.
  • Olesova, L., & Yang, D. (2019). Engineering students’ cognitive learning and perceptions in a blended learning course. International Journal of Engineering Education, 35(6A), 1725-1737.
  • Olesova, L., & Melville, A. (2017). Embedded library services: From cooperation to collaboration to enhance student learning asynchronous online course. Journal of Library & Information Services in Distance Learning, 11(3-4), 287-299.
  • Sadaf, A., & Olesova, L. (2017). Enhancing cognitive presence in online case discussions with questions based on the Practical Inquiry Model. American Journal of Distance Education, 31(1), 56-69. doi: 10.1080/08923647.2017.1267525 (this paper received Best Quantitative Journal Article Award by the Division of Distance Learning, AECT in 2019).
  • Olesova, L., Slavin, M., & Lim, J. (2016). Exploring the effect of scripted roles on cognitive presence in asynchronous online discussions. Online Learning Journal, 20(4), 34-53.
  • de Oliveira, L. & Olesova, L. (2013). Learning about the literacy development of English Language Learners in asynchronous online discussions. Journal of Education, 193(2), 15-23
  • Olesova, L., Yang, D., & Richardson, J. (2011). Cross-cultural differences in undergraduate students’ perceptions of online barriers. Journal of Asynchronous Learning Networks, 15(3), 68-80.
  • Olesova, L., Richardson, J., Weasenforth, D., & Meloni, C. (2011). Using asynchronous instructional audio feedback in online environments: A mixed methods study. Journal of Online Learning and Teaching, 7(1), 30-42.
  • Ertmer, P., Strobel, J., Cheng, X., Chen, X., Kim, H., Olesova, L., Sadaf, A., & Tomory, A. (2010). Expressions of critical thinking in role-playing simulations: Comparisons across roles. Journal of Computing in Higher Education, 22(2), 73-94. doi: 10.1007/s12528-010-9030-7
  • Yang, D., Olesova, L., & Richardson, J. (2010). Impact of cultural differences on learner participation, communication, and learning in an online environment. Journal of Educational Computing Research, 43(2), 165-182. doi:10.2190/EC.43.2. b
  • Braunstein, B., Meloni, C., & Zolotareva, L. (2000). The U.S.-SiberLink internet project. Teaching English as a Second or Foreign Language Electronic Journal, 4(3),
Other Publications
  • Sadaf, A., & Olesova, L. (2022). A Systematic review of strategies to develop students’ cognitive presence in online courses. In Using Active Learning to Teach Critical and Contextual Studies: One Teaching Plan, Two Experiments, Three Videos. 8th International Conference on Higher Education Advances (HEAd'22), 619-627.
  • Weinberger, S., Almalki, H., & Olesova, L. (2021). Teaching teachers phonetics: The design and implementation of an asynchronous online English phonetics course. Proceedings of the Linguistic Society of America, 6(2), 5112.
  • *Sadaf, A., & Olesova, L. (2015). Designing question prompts using practical inquiry model to facilitate cognitive presence in online case discussions. Proceedings of Association for Educational Communications and Technology Annual Conference 2015 (pp. 146-152). Indianapolis, IN.
  • de Oliveira L., Olesova L., & Gilmetdinova, A. (2012). Student-led online discussions in TESOL. TESOL Connections, November, 2012. Retrieved from
  • *Olesova, L., Koehler, A., & Richardson, J. (2011). Students’ perceived effectiveness of asynchronous embedded audio feedback. In M. Simonson (Ed.). 34th Proceedings of the Association for Educational Communications and Technology (pp.188-198), Jacksonville, FL.