Blended Learning Vs. Blended Teaching

Hybrid Learning has been thrust into the spotlight within my network of corporate trainers. It seems to be the most appropriate solution to the “new normal.” Leaners still get the lessons they need and then they can come into an in-person workshop when it is safe to do so. It made perfect sense to me, so I began to think of ways to convert existing in-person workshops to media that is in line with hybrid learning. My plan was to convert some stuff to PowerPoint, put together a few eLearning modules and roll everything out piece by piece.  Of course, everyone else was doing it so why shouldn’t we?

Enter, Stephanie Morgan from hrzone.com. In researching strategies, I came across her post titled Blended learning: how to craft the perfect blend for boosting performance. In it, she discusses a post from Donald Clark about what blended learning shouldn’t be. Suffice to say, my idea was something that needed to be looked at through a more critical lens. I discovered that my method does not take into consideration the learner preference. What may work for me, may not work for someone trying to consume new information.  According to Clark, my idea was “Blended Teaching” and most likely not the way to go.

I made a design mistake by placing the emphasis on teaching methods and not on learning. It was a learning experience for me and it is leading to some great conversation with my colleagues. Have you ever been excited to implement something new and have to go back to the drawing board?

Image by Yao Charlen from Pixabay

4 comments

Hi Dan,

Thank you for your insight! I especially appreciate the line about considering learner preference, something that I have discovered to be very important in my role as a community college instructor. I say this both in terms of lesson planning and delivery, but also in an attempt to help students recognize and value their individual learning styles. I think it helps them feel more confident in their own intellects. As you likely know, our college went fully online months ago and it has been a learning curve for students and faculty alike. I do imagine blended learning options in the fall or spring and will need to research effective practices.

What do you teach and what teaching methods do you implement, both live and online?
Regards,
Dorothy

Good Morning Dorothy,
I design and deliver workshops for a financial institution. All adult learners from various backgrounds. Everything that I roll out happens to be in-person classroom style training. As far as online, we utilize a purchased resource that allows for limited customization. Company preference happens to be the in-person style. However, We are making strides to at least discuss adding some blended principles.

Cheers,
Dan

Answering your last question: yes! but not everyone who goes down the wrong path is able to analyze their own design and then willing to change it. They say success is the ability to adapt. OK, I just made that up, but I think it’s true.

I love the blender image! Strikes the perfect opening note to the post.

Thanks! Andrea

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