In my last post i provided a brief overview of blended learning. In this post, i am going to talk about the subtypes and categories of blended learning that exist in today’s educational and corporate settings.
Subtypes of Blended Learning Approaches
According to Graham (2006), there are currently four specific models of blended learning instructions:
- Activity level (i.e., learning contains both face-to-face and computer-mediated elements).
2. Course level (i.e., face-to-face and computer-mediated activities included as part of the course).
3. Program level (i.e., selecting both online and face-to-face courses).
4. Institutional level (i.e., organizational dedication to blending face-to-face and computer mediated instructions).
When designing a blended learning model using the above mentioned levels, it is very important for instructors to have a clear objective for introducing blended learning to their students. To date, research has shown that instructors tend to blend online and face-to-face instructions using three specific categories of blended learning. The first category is referred to as “enabling blends”, whereby the focus is on addressing issues of access and convenience. For example, students at the University of Phoenix can select their courses (i.e., face-to-face, online, and blended) based on their budget and the time flexibility required to successfully complete their classes.
The second category is referred to as “enhancing blends”, whereby the goal is to permit the implementation of resources and supplementary tools into the traditional face-to-face environment. The third and last category is referred to as “transforming blends”, and the goal is to allow a fundamental transformation of pedagogy by using the latest technologies that are available today (Graham, 2006). According to Graham (2006), corporate settings are much more likely to rely on the third category (i.e., transforming blends), since they have access to more resources. Higher education institutions are less likely to select the third category due to limitations such as lack of enough class space or accessibility to modern technologies. In my next post, i will focus my attention to corporate settings and talk about the importance of “appropriate” delivery solution in the Organizational Learning Cycle.