What is blended learning/virtual learning?
Blended learning or virtual learning occur outside the traditional classroom-like training facilities. Instead, they use an online platform to deliver programs.
These platforms (for example Blackboard, Moodle or Instructure) are used to deliver content, submit assessments, and provide instructions for learning experiences and activities to be completed offline.
What is the difference between blended learning/virtual learning and eLearning?
Whilst both virtual learning and eLearning and delivered online, they are also quite different.
Virtual learning incorporates a blend of delivery methods and learning experiences that are completed online and offline, including on the job training, self-reflection activities, projects, coaching sessions, instruction to complete practical activities, and other learning experiences. So whilst some of the content delivery is virtual, a large portion of learning occurs offline. Generally, participants are assigned to groups. A facilitator oversees participants’ work, holds group sessions through online platforms such as Zoom, responds to questions and comments on discussion boards and reviews assessments.
eLearning, on the other hand, is completed predominantly – if not solely – online. It doesn’t require participants to complete learning experiences offline and doesn’t include discussion boards, collaborative activities or interaction with other participants. Assessment forms part of the eLearning (usually multiple choice, mix and match or fill in the gap questions) – a facilitator does not provide individual feedback for each assessment.
The benefits of blended learning
A blend of solutions such as digital, on the job, self-paced and SME coaching will likely offer the most effective, ‘just in time’, ‘bite-sized’, flexible learning approach.
Face-to-face delivery may be limited by time, location and operational constraints, therefore delivering some content and learning experiences through online, on the job or self-paced methods can avoid logistical challenges and save money.
It is great for people who work remotely
Blended learning provides flexibility.
If the solution is time-critical you should work with stakeholders to identify the ‘must’, ‘should’ and ‘nice to haves’ to prioritise and focus key learning content.
You may also suggest a ‘rolling’ development and release of learning in a phased approach so that both learners and immediate organisational needs are supported.
How to design blended learning solutions
Our blended learning solutions
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