Blended learning or combined learning
Combined learning links classroom teaching with online learning through multimedia, interactive educational modules and more. Because combined learning uses a mixture of learning methods, it provides a more effective and attractive education. In this article we will provide you the information about the blended learning approach.
Blended learning (B-Learning) or Combined Learning is an education program (formal or informal) that combines online digital media with traditional classroom methods. It requires the physical presence of both the teacher and the student, as well as the use of remote technological tools. While students still attend physical schools with a teacher present, face-to-face face-to-face practices are combined with online activities.
What is the blended learning approach?
There is a great future for combined learning as part of an educational technology strategy (EdTech). Schools and some online universities or virtual schools have realized that online learning environments may benefit those who cannot move to campus.
The incorporation of combined learning in a traditional school environment can help mitigate the impact of absences due to illness, travel and distance, among others .
For clarity, combined learning consists of an educational strategy in which instructors can combine digital media in line with traditional classroom methods.
In this type of strategy, both participants are present in the physical space, with an element of flexibility and control over the time, place, trajectory and pace of study of the student .
Many teachers have made progress since technology was incorporated into school classrooms.
Now, these teachers are in a combined learning space where they instruct with traditional methods; however, they have created a fundamental change in the way students acquire new learning experiences.
The inverted learning approach itself comes from combined learning, which has already become famous in new pedagogical practices.
While EdTech has paved the way for the creation of online schools, there is still the argument that combined learning approaches are more sustainable and can help motivate a student to stay on the path of study.
It is defined as a hybrid teaching methodology: it makes technology and e-learning, or online learning, a more integral part of the classroom experience.
It’s more than just working with a computer in self-assessed activities.
Combined learning involves combining online lessons, e-learning, traditional instructional methods, and online comments and assessments . This helps foster independent study and creates a completely new learning environment for students.
The impact of blended learning approach
Combined learning or Blended Learning ( B-Learning ) has become the latest educational system to achieve a significant impact on today’s classrooms. Wherever it is applied, from schools to universities, B-Learning is used to unite the digital world and classroom teaching. But what benefits does it offer to staff and students? Can it work together with traditional teaching methods?
How combined learning is making an impact inside and outside the classroom
Combined learning uses current mobile technology to combine learning inside and outside the classroom, which maximizes the educational impact for students. Although the traditional student and teacher format is maintained, the one size fits all model is broken by taking education beyond the physical classroom and allowing students to learn anytime, anywhere.
Combined learning redefines the role of the teacher, offering more flexible options for teaching, depending on the content, subject and abilities of the students. This trend means that educators can focus on student learning and understanding, rather than the delivery method itself.
While learning outside the classroom is something that students have always been motivated, the recent explosion of digital technology has made teaching outside the classroom now much more attractive. By exploring how combined learning is used inside and outside the classroom today, some experts agree that, in general, more and more educational content is delivered through videos and personal devices. In universities, students are contributing more content of their own, both to collaborate with each other, in their projects, and for evaluation purposes. Since much of modern work is now digital, it is increasingly important that students also learn how to be audiovisual creators.
The benefits of blending traditional education and technology
Experts believe that the combination of traditional teaching and technology should be used to meet the students’ preferred learning style, as well as to support teachers. Technology can provide teachers with information about student progress and requirements, which maximizes face-to-face contact and helps educational staff design courses that allow for more flexible delivery. Ultimately, technology works best when it supports the true essence of education, that is, when teachers are helped in their work to get students to assimilate new skills.
Technology has the power to truly improve learning environments for the benefit of students, provided that teachers decide to adopt it. In online learning programs, such as the Learning Environments used by Abiztar Learning Technologies , where students watch video conferences before and after attending the classroom, they offer an example of a combined learning tactic that could be more widely adopted in the future. True combined learning requires highly relational, active and inquiry-oriented programs, both online and offline, as well as the use of digital tools to empower students.
The future of blended learning approach
How do experts see the evolution of the concept of combined learning in the future? Some believe that combined learning will take advantage of technological advances. The concept of B-learning has existed for some time, but it has yet to embrace the potential of emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence and virtual reality, or cloud technologies to ensure the safe application of distance exams.
What are the challenges of B-Learning?
Since combined learning uses learning in the classroom and outside the classroom, one of its biggest challenges is to keep students focused and dedicated to achieving the key objectives of their curriculum.
Differences between E-Learning and B-Learning
Everything evolves. Especially those ideas, processes or methods that depend on new technologies. E-learning could not be otherwise. Why? Because despite the extraordinary advances of the educational platforms, the face-to-face method, continues to contribute great value to education.
Teachers and students are needed. Students contribute to the group through their approaches, research and documentation regarding the subject of learning. Individualized work is part of teamwork, and in turn, the essence of collaborative learning. At the same time, teachers exercise support, motivation and guidance functions.
And although educational platforms generate infinite tools to play this new role exclusively online, the face-to-face method drives the best of each. It enhances the qualities of each student and projects the ability to empathize and involve to overcome the learning objectives.
In fact, it does not seem that new technologies are moving towards teacher replacement. Rather it is the opposite. In short, the evolution of E-Learning is based on promoting the face-to-face, with the effectiveness of new technologies. That is, Blended Learning.
Tips for combined learning
Make sure technology improves learning.
By having a combined learning environment, there is a temptation to use technology in all tasks within the classroom .
However , the necessary precautions must be taken to ensure that the available technology is actually used for the benefit of teaching and learning .
Therefore, teachers may wish to consider guidance within the SAMR model , which focuses on how technology can be used to modify and redefine tasks, rather than simply replacing traditional activities.
For example, simply using a keyboard to type a document to improve a presentation may not always be the most effective use of technology.