Posted by Christy Williams on December 14th, 2017
Blended Learning is a mix of face-to-face instruction and technology to facilitate learning. Sometimes referred to as a hybrid model, Blended Learning can be used in the adult education classroom and proves to be beneficial to instructors and students alike. Blended Learning implementation can range from brief, in-class polls to fully online programs and assessments.
Benefits of Blended Learning
One of the most prominent benefits of Blended Learning lies in the ability for you as an educator to differentiate your instruction. Blended Learning models allow you to provide student-centered instruction at much larger scales. Technology offers you access to more detailed, individualized student data. It also enables you to offer more choices for students in terms of educational resources.
Students reap benefits of Blended Learning models too. The foremost benefit for adult learners is the level of control in their learning. Many of the online programs offer an opportunity for learners to control the place, time and pace of their coursework. Additionally, Blended Learning provides an opportunity for adult learners to practice and demonstrate their knowledge in various ways while strengthening their technological skills.
Integrating Blended Learning
Blended Learning is a somewhat new concept in adult education. Integrating it in your adult education classroom may look very different than others’ classrooms. As you begin the integration process, it is important to carefully select your tools for integration. This allows you to match the appropriate technology to your classroom while avoiding overwhelming yourself or your students. Ways to integrate Blended Learning in your classroom include:
· Apps and Websites – Numerous applications and websites provide students with opportunities for continued practice with specific skill sets. The various apps and sites offer your students guided and independent practice.
· Mobile Device – Mobile devices are often used for polling with certain software. This approach may require students to bring their devices to class. The polls typically require text message capability or access to specific links.
· Online Videos – Assign instructional videos to watch with your students prior to, or after, a lesson. Some of the videos also feature interactive lessons.
· Shared Cloud Storage – Shared cloud storage now makes it possible for you to load all of your course materials in one place. The resources can range from textbook files to full assessments. Your shared storage solution may be on a website or in a specific cloud storage platform. Some of the most popular solutions are: Google Drive, Dropbox, Evernote and Pinterest.
· Total Programming – You may decide to create all of your course content on a technology platform and reserve your face-to-face interactions for tutorial, clarity and additional support.
As technology evolves, Blended Learning continues to rise in popularity for students and teachers. Blended Learning offers many benefits including greater student control and a wider reach for teacher differentiation. The way you integrate Blended Learning may vary from class to class. Some students benefit from total programming whereas others may simply need instructional videos to supplement lessons. Numerous apps and websites drive the integration of technology within education. Therefore, Blended Learning is becoming both an expectation and necessity.