The purpose of the present study was to examine social presence and collaborative learning behavior patterns in asynchronous discussion forums using the content analysis method which has become a popular qualitative research approach in distance education. Two online discussion forums of students who enrolled in a distance course at a major university in the United States were analyzed by two coders using coding schemes. The inter-coder reliability measures were .87 for Holsti's CR and .91 for Cohen's Kappa. The results revealed that students showed affective, interactive, and cohesive behaviors of social presence to help each other in the process of collaborative learning. Additionally, this study found that while students actively exchanged resources and feedback, there was a lack of elaborating and challenging behaviors. In conclusion, it was argued that distance educators should consider instructional methods to increase the level of social presence in order to facilitate collaborative learning processes. This study will be beneficial to those who are interested in examining the effect of the social dimensions of learning in a distance learning environment, and also those who are interested in employing qualitative content analysis methods.