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How to create a blended learning program

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During the COVID pandemic lockdown, schools were forced to move to online mode and explore various lecture delivery systems. Now as schools are opening up, the forward is not to abandon the online processes they developed altogether. Instead, going forward, a balanced “blended” approach is needed. Blended learning programs refer to educational content delivery methods that blend together online resources with traditional classroom teaching methods. In blended learning programs, students attend offline classes with their fellow students, but the teacher shares the content using various kinds of online activities and resources.

In short, blended education programs offer the best of both worlds, online as well as offline. Many schools are now using various digital resources to supplement their teaching strategy without sacrificing the benefits of teacher-led classrooms.

In this blog, we have elaborated on how to design a blended education program:

  • Define the learning outcomes

In any learning program, the first step is to define the objectives and goals of the program. The learning outcomes are decided by the following questions:

  • What skill(s) does the program aim to impart in students?
  • What information should be included in the program?
  • What instructional tools should be used to deliver new knowledge and information?

The goals and objectives serve as a roadmap to design your program. This allows teachers to clearly see at which step of the overall course they are in.

  • Outline the program

The course outline must specify course objectives, assignments, papers, and tests that have to be submitted, along with the deadlines that the students have to meet.

A course outline is critical for all stakeholders. Students can use the outline to stay on track while the teachers can use it to ensure that the program is progressing with the desired speed.

  • Determine the level of interaction

Blended learning programs give students control over their learning in terms of self-paced learning activities. A blended learning program must clearly determine the interactivity level of the program. The portions to be delivered in live classroom and the portions delivered by online mode need to be pre-decided.In addition, self-learning modules must be clearly marked out. There is a multitude of possibilities and you can adjust the proportions of offline, online, taught, and self-learned based on the level of students. For example, students can assemble in a classroom and an instructor based in some other country can deliver a lecture using online tools. The choices are many and the teachers have to take out some time in choosing what suits your students.

  • Include group activities

Collaborative learning is the need of the hour for making students ready for today’s globalized world. Collaborative learning allows students to interact with other students and share knowledge and insights. For example, you can take the students on an online tour of an art gallery, and ask them to collaborate and write up reports on the various artworks they have seen.

  • Encourage communication

As blended learning involves an online component, make sure that students know that they can communicate with their teachers in case they have doubts or any other queries. For instance, students can expect an email reply within 24 to 48 hours. This benefits both the teacher and the students. The teacher gets better feedback of what the class is or is not understanding and students get the assurance that they have a solid support system.

  • Design an assessment plan

Any kind of program is incomplete if it doesn’t include an assessment plan to check the student’s progress. The assessment plan can include a periodic test at the end of each module or they can be asked to submit a summary after they have done a self-learning activity.

Blended education programs if done right can help take the quality of programs offered multifold. It is imperative that schools and teachers do solid ground research to implement such a program and offer the very best to their students.

At LEAD, we try to incorporate the best parts of blended learning into our pedagogy. LEAD Student App ensures that learning for students at LEAD Powered Schools continues even at home. Various activities and quizzes ensure students remain engaged even outside the classroom. Teachers can stay in touch with parents and take the benefit of an involved parent.

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About the author

Mohini is a Product Manager at LEAD School. She is an IIT Bombay alumnus. Her love of solving problems drives her as a product manager. Her varied experience of products across industries allows her to have multiple outlooks on every problem. She is a strong believer of the butterfly effect, and hence keeps making small efforts for the big changes and is excited to be a part of LEAD School.

Mohini Rathi

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