Prepping for Blended Learning
“Blended learning is an approach where educators leverage technology and digital access for learners to create, communicate, collaborate and apply critical thinking skills to construct knowledge in a connected world.” – AlphaPlus
Blended learning is an educational approach that has existed for some years. But the ongoing pandemic is continuing to push the use of technology forward in many adult education programs. As such, this approach may become the new standard. Using a mixture of in-person and online learning, a blended learning model can offer benefits to the adult learner. There is even evidence that it is more effective for adult learners than face-to-face or online education alone. AlphaPlus outlined four benefits in its position paper on blended learning:
- Blended learning supports learners’ self-confidence and self-reliance. Learning in a digital environment can encourage exploratory learning, problem solving and digital readiness.
- Blended learning encourages social connections and collaboration. Online social connections allow learners to network as well as expand their learning beyond the classroom.
- Blended learning provides flexibilities. Many adults have constraints on their time and availability. A blended approach offers more flexibility for busy schedules.
- Blended learning helps to manage systemic inequalities. There is increasing demand for people to use digital technologies, especially the internet, to carry out essential tasks. Educators help learners to successfully access and navigate this digital world.
How do educators implement blended learning? To be truly blended, 30-79% of the course will include online learning. The goal is that each component (face-to-face and online) will enhance the other. There are many ways to achieve this. For example, an educator may use online instructional videos, a selection of websites or apps, or provide access to course materials online. Explore the links below for help prepping for blended learning in adult education.
- The AlphaPlus Blended Learning Field Guide
- Blended Learning for the Adult Education Classroom
- The Blended Learning Toolbox
- IDEAL Distance Education and Blended Learning Handbook, 7th Edition
- New Readers Press Webinar: Planning Blended Learning Lessons for Adult Education
- The What, Why, Who, and How of Blended Learning for Adult Basic Skills Learners
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