Different Blended Learning Situations

 

So, Why is Blended Learning So Popular with Training Teams

The traditional method of disseminating knowledge no doubt favours some learners, however many people lose confidence in their own retention capability.

Of course, two learners can never be the same. It is only logical to understand that what works for one person may not exactly work for the other. It’s like trying to force a squared shaped item into a round hole and expecting it to fit.

Now, with blended learning, there’s a chance for training programs to be more effective for both trainers and learners alike.


 

What is Blended Learning?

Blended learning comprises the tweaking of traditional teaching methods so that it can accommodate the use of technology. This implies that teachers combine the traditional sit-in-class style of imparting knowledge with learning via the use of the digital technology, such as computers and mobile devices (e-learning).

 

This means that:

Blended Learning = Classroom experience + online learning (which has been pre-developed by the training manager) + Structured independent learning time (by trainees in their comfort zone).

With the above formula, every learner’s needs will be met. Asides the traditional classroom experience which could be once or twice a week, where all trainees meet to interact amongst themselves, the trainees are also given learning materials that can be accessed from any place through the use of digital technology.

This includes Word or PDF documents, videos and audio, which gives an in-depth explanation of the course content or interactive web elements such as assessments. With these, all trainees get to study conveniently in their comfort zone.

The more traditional aspect allows training staff to use classroom-based learning with the inclusion of technology such as keypad systems or mobile devices for Q and A and assessments.

 

The Elements of an Effective Blended Learning Classroom

Since the overall essence of Blended learning is to achieve an improved training program, it is important that we look into some of the elements of an effective blended learning approach. They include:

    • A Comprehensive Learning Management System (LMS):
      This is no doubt the most essential element in blended learning. The LMS should serve as the repository of learning materials, exercises, assignments as well as other web resources required by both employees and training managers. It must be easy to access as well as very flexible to use, whilst providing a means to track training compliance through automation.

 

    • A detailed course outline:
      This is another important element to achieve effective blended learning. From the beginning of the class, trainees should be given full information on the course. From the objectives and course resources to the assignments and grading system. With this, training staff can easily track the progress of their employees.

 

    • A clear learning objective:
      Training teams should draw out the course objective clearly before the class commences. With this, they can structure their classes in ways that ensure that the objective of the course is fully accomplished.

 

    • Consistency in course structure:
      The general outlook of LMS should be consistent. This means that there should be consistency in the graphical illustrations as well as the course material design so as to avoid confusing people.

 

    • Effective Communication among students and teachers:
      To achieve the essence of blended learning, there must be effective communication between the teachers and the students. Teachers should seek feedbacks and queries from the students. Also, towards the end of the course, students should be evaluated. In addition, opinion bordering on the delivery of the course should be gotten from students via live or online surveys,

 

  • Effective Training Teams:
    For training teams to effectively deliver their program, they should receive first-hand experience of the blended learning system as their trainees. With this experience, they put themselves in the learner’s role and understand the need for course content that is interactive and relevant. In addition, training staff must be well trained in the use of the management strategies and technology, which has been designed for blended learning.

 


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What makes Blended Learning Popular?

With the current trend in transforming learning in the workplace, blended learning continues to gain popularity.

This is as a result of several features including:

    • It gives room for adequate engagement:
      Blended learning is designed in a way that immerses the learner in the course. After adequate discussion of the course in the classroom, trainees are required to go home or to their workplace and continue with course material online, they get to see videos, as well as extensively read different course materials in their natural environment. They get to interact with their training managers one-on-one as well as engage in self-learning, whilst solving exercises and assessments.

 

    • Greater retention of information:
      Since the means of imparting knowledge is far from the traditional classroom method, employees get access to course knowledge through different learning channels. This, in turn, aids retention of relevant information.

 

    • It is designed to suit different Learning needs:
      Blended learning is designed to consider the different learning needs of learners. An all-round channel of instruction is established hence, people who aren’t naturally comfortable sitting long hours listening to lectures have access to learning in their ‘comfort zone’. The videos, audio or online pool will help such people understand the course better.

 

    • It guarantees an enhanced experience for students and training managers:
      The blended approach to disseminating knowledge helps both the trainees and training staff enjoy their learning experiences respectively. The central pool of course materials help people explore topics being taught to them. By taking away the pressure that comes with long hours of classroom studies, blended learning is designed in a way that allows people to study when and where they are most effective while teachers get to create course contents in their comfort zone. Training managers now have the ability to take training directly to the workforce frontline, where its needed most.

 

  • It maximizes the use of existing and new teaching models:
    Blended learning makes it possible to maximize the usage of the traditional classroom teaching method and the eLearning process.

 

Conclusion

Blended Learning has grown to become the preferred method for training teams. As traditional methods and technology come together, they close the gap on different learning types. Training staff now have the ability to create better experiences for their learners, whilst improving business outcomes for their organisations.