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Beyond the Talk About Blended Learning
Are you skeptical about blended learning? There has been a lot of talk about blending, and any topic that's on everybody's lips isn't typically on mine.
Are you skeptical about blended learning? There has been a lot of talk about blending, and any topic that's on everybody's lips isn't typically on mine. Also, blending is more complicated than scheduling a class or pointing people to an online course.
However, there is something about blending that has intrigued me from the get-go. Students often learn best from blends, from systems, from messages delivered by many sources and available in many ways. Any CLO who is concerned about lessons that stop at the classroom door recognizes that blending might just make a difference in performance at work.
What Is Blended Learning?
In a white paper for the American Management Association titled "Blended Learning Opportunities," Rebecca Vaughn Frazee and I wrote that blended learning integrates seemingly opposite approaches, such as formal and informal learning, face-to-face and online experiences, directed paths and reliance on self-direction, and digital references and collegial connections, in order to achieve individual and organizational goals. (To read the white paper, visit www.amanet.org/blended.)
From the learning executive's perspective, blended learning is about improving performance and achieving business objectives with employees spending more time where they are most needed - at work. From the employees' perspective, blending allows them to answer questions and develop at a time and place more of their choosing.
Blended learning must communicate with employees and encourage smart choices. In the past, the decision was simple: Commit to this class at this time and this place, or do not. With blending, there are many and persistent choices to be made:
- Do I do this e-learning module now, later or perhaps not at all?
- Will I be active in my online community? Do I want to add an entry to the blog?
- Where do I find somebody to talk to about this?
- Should I take this self-assessment and use it to point me to resources?
- Which class should I attend? Why attend any class at all?
- I downloaded seven podcasts. How do I find time to listen to them?
- Do I want to read this book or the other one that my e-coach recommended?
- Can I get back to headquarters for the lunch chat that my manager scheduled?
- What is available to me in the databases, reference manuals, templates and checklists?
The Next Generation of HR: What’s Wrong? What’s Right?
May 23rd 1:00pm - 2:00pm CT
2013 CLO Breakfast Club, Boston
September 12th - 12th, 2013The Westin Copley Place
Fall 2013 CLO Symposium
September 30th - October 2nd, 2013Rancho Las Palmas Resort & Spa
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