The demand for education extends beyond high school and college. Businesses always need a way to put new employees, business partners, and clients up to speed with industry developments. Adult education is a focal point for many managers.
You’ve probably heard the term “blended learning” before. It’s a modern approach to professional training and development that technology companies often use to get staff familiar with new software tools, products, and services.
The idea is that instructors and participants can accomplish more when they aren’t limited to paper and pencil. Add in interactivity, visuals, and opportunities to collaborate with other users, and you’ll have a technology-driven, virtual learning experience.
Blended learning training has several advantages over traditional methods of instruction, but there’s considerable confusion over the definition of “blended” and what it entails. Let’s talk about blended learning (or, as it’s sometimes known, “hybrid learning”).
Blended Learning Explained
Blended learning is an approach to education that combines internet-based training with traditional physical classrooms. Both online and in-person components must be complementary to create an integrated learning experience.
Having these two parts work together is what differentiates e-learning from blended learning. E-learning encompasses any virtual training program that uses the internet; blended learning does more than just replace lectures with online content.
This flexibility enables hybrid learning systems to tailor the learning experience to each student. It’s risen in popularity thanks to the advent of internet-enabled devices and services.
What Are the Benefits of Blended Learning Labs?
While it may seem simple at first glance, this pedagogical technique’s high reputation among business users is due to several reasons:
- They’re scientifically proven to encourage understanding of the material because it combines the best aspects of face-to-face interactions with the convenience and self-pacing of online learning.
- They boosts participant engagement. The traditional classroom portion emphasizes collaboration and focus, while additional elements like webinars and interactive tools help supplement the experience.
- They have all the convenience of internet-based tools. There’s no need to schedule meeting times; participants can access course materials from any location; and it fits into the busy schedules of business professionals.
- Because blended learning labs can be self-paced training modules, users who need help on specific materials can focus on them without holding back the rest of the class. Likewise, participants excelling at a concept can move on to other sections without interfering with the class as a whole.
- Studies have shown that their flexibility makes it excellent for users with different levels of expertise.
- Blended learning labs result in lower costs, as organizing a physical classroom can be swapped for a virtual classroom. Your company will get a better return on investment (ROI).
- Management can quickly track the progress of individual participants through online testing, evaluation, and feedback.
There’s no reason not to start searching for blended learning labs to boost your business’s productivity, knowledge, and fulfillment.
With millions of businesses implementing blended learning solutions, many variations on the strategy have arisen. Each one has fit the needs of organizations large and small, so experiment to see what works for you.
- Flipped classroom. Users watch lecture material online and then spend class time engaging with exercises while collaborating with other participants and the instructor. A learning management system may administer video lessons prior to class.
- Station rotation. Participants rotate among different phases on a fixed schedule. For instance, one group might interact with online materials, while another works with the instructor. This setup is popular in schools but could be relevant to businesses as well.
- Enriched virtual. The class is mainly online. Users can choose to meet physically with instructors if they need help. This strategy is fitting for independent employees with limited time.
- Supplemental. Some instructors choose to use online videos as supplemental course materials for learners wishing to deepen their understanding of the subject matter.
- Project-focused. Managers looking for hands-on experience may choose this option. The ultimate goal is to complete project-based assignments with online and in-class exercises.
Your organization’s solution doesn’t have to fit into one of these categories. Use the flexibility of blended learning to craft a training program for your specific situation.