In today’s online culture, online learning has become an essential part of education. However, the jump from an 100% in-person classroom to online learning can be challenging. The solution? Hybrid learning. Hybrid learning is a mixture of in-person and online classes. This method allows students to benefit from the independence of online learning and the support in-person learning allows. If you’re unsure whether hybrid learning is best for you and your students, here are ten reasons why hybrid learning is the best option for students and teachers today.
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A reality in classrooms, whether you’re teaching school students or adults, is that students can easily lose focus when the content becomes monotonous or repetitive. Hybrid learning enables you to teach through a range of platforms, including in person and online (which includes fun elements such as gamification, socially interactive learning, and other online platforms for learning). A combination of these two methods of teaching can give your students the perfect mix of independent online learning and in-person learning.
Research conducted by the US Department of Education found that hybrid learning actually improves students’ performance. This is because students today thrive from learning through multiple platforms, and are able to remain more focused with a blended learning model. In the technology-focused society we live in, it makes sense that students today can struggle when faced with an entirely offline method of learning. When technology is integrated into classrooms, students are more concentrated, and therefore can absorb more information.
Having the flexibility to control when you want to study is extremely underrated. Adult students have busy lives, with work, family and other important commitments – not to mention their studies. Having the ability to choose when to study means that students will be focused and attentive in the time they allocate to studying and when attending in-person classes.
When it comes to adult students, it can be assumed that they are juggling their studies among many other important duties. The reality is that sometimes, work, family or illness may prevent students from coming into class. However, hybrid learning allows students to attend a portion of classes from home. This means that if they were unable to attend a class in person they can catch up or do the work online.
Whether teaching children or adults, all students enjoy taking ownership of their own education. Allowing students a degree of autonomy with their online work empowers them to track their progress, seek out extra resources and set their own goals. However, absolute autonomy may not be best for many students (particularly younger ones). In this case, the support of teachers and the school’s resources is valuable for the students.
Students that are given autonomy in their studies learn the importance of time management very early on. With the freedom to control part of their schedule, they must become responsible for their own education. This helps them gain skills that are highly valued in the real world and on a resume. Valued skills include independent research, time management, self-learning, and communication proficiency.
In hybrid learning, students are able to get the best of both worlds. They have the independence and flexibility of online learning, which helps them to stay focused and interested. Plus, the teacher support that in-person classes allow. This blend of autonomy and face-to-face interaction with teachers and other students enables students to have the best possible learning experience.
As mentioned above, students benefit from learning through a variety of different tools and platforms. The combination of in-person and virtual learning allows teachers to make the most of their teaching resources, from online games to trivia to video content. Additionally, this use of multiple learning tools will help students who benefit from unconventional methods.
If students have trouble taking notes or miss any classes, the ability to watch recorded online classes allows them to catch up to their peers or revise the material. This is particularly important for students who learn through repetition. It also benefits the teacher, as they do not have to repeat their lessons to students who may have missed classes.
Every person communicates differently, and hybrid learning allows the best outcome for all types of learners. Students can choose to communicate with their teachers face-to-face, or via email, instant messaging or a built-in LMS the school may have.
There are four models of hybrid learning:
Rotation Model: Students with a single class rotate between online learning and other learning modes.
Flex Model: Students can switch between learning modes on a customized routine. Every class is divided into online and offline components.
Self-Blend/A La Carte Model: In this model, the student takes up more than one course online and offline and the student may choose between them at their convenience.
Enriched Virtual Model: Under this model, classes are divided into online and offline components as well as face-to-face interaction between students and teachers is required, students may not come to campus every day.
Blended learning incorporates traditional learning methods with online learning, and it’s usually divided 50/50 between online and in-person lessons. Hybrid learning uses any learning techniques, not just traditional techniques. It also leans more heavily towards online lessons.