What is Blended Learning?


Firstly, lets make it clear that currently, there is no consensus on a single agreed-upon definition for blended learning. However in ELT it often refers to ‘the combination of diverse delivery channels and teaching tools as part of course design’ (from ELT World Wiki).

Blended Learning usually involves a combination of classroom learning, online learning and/or mobile learning. The degree of integration of these components depends on the course design .

So, what are the benefits?

An article by Mobl21 states that  a blended learning course’s aim (from a pedagogical perspective), is to combine the best of classroom face-to-face learning with online learning experiences, enabling:
  • An opportunity for students to practise technology skills in navigating online course materials and possibility creating digital content for assignments.
  • An increase in student-instructor and student-student interaction through the use of course-communication tools like, discussion forums.
  • The ability to reserve face-to-face time for interactive activities, such as higher-level discussions, small group work, debates, demonstrations, or lab activities.

From a student perspective, the appeal of blended learning includes:

  • Flexibility of schedule: learn any time, anywhere.
  • Control: students have some level of control over the pacing of their learning. Difficult concepts can be reviewed as often as necessary.
  • Convenience of an online class with many of the social aspects of a face-to-face class.

Blended learning gives learners and teachers a potential environment to achieve more, through a greater reach and accessibility of educational material.

Ok, so how do I start using it?

There are many blended learning courses for ELT already available, so unless you are planning to develop your own, all you need to do is choose one! Find out how you can use blended learning with specific publishers by following these links:

Richmond Digital

Macmillan Digital

Oxford University Press Digital

You may also find these links useful:

BEBC Digital ELT Resource Glossary

British Council Blended Learning

Blended MEC

Or you can give us a call on +44 (0)333 800 1900 to find out what digital components are available for the course you’re using!

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