Blended learning isn’t exactly new - different technologies have been slowly trickling their way into the classroom for many years now. Despite this, blended learning is often misunderstood. Here are a few common myths about blended learning we often hear:
- Myth # 1 - Incorporatingcomputers/mobile devices into learning is distracting to learners, and will take away from course content.
Actually, these technologies foster an increase in productivity, and student engagement. Blended learning takes standard classroom content, and repurposes it into online activities, quizzes, assignments and videos. It delivers traditional content through a medium that learners associate with leisure time, thus making them more engaged and encouraging them to participate and put in more effort. Most learners these days are not only familiar with technology, but they are experts at it. Many of them are more comfortable using technology than they are with pen and paper, so blended learning actually targets their interests and skills.
- Myth # 2 - Learners cannot effectively be taught from such a distance.
If done properly, using the right features and optimizing them correctly, learners should not be able to feel the physical distance at all. In fact, technology can even improve communication between learners and teachers. Administrators can provide learners with a space for discussion forums, and question boxes, so that there are quick and easy ways to communicate. People who are generally very chatty will surely take advantage of these tools, and even those who are more reserved can participate without as much hesitancy as they do person.
- Myth # 3 - Technology is taking the place of teachers.
Blended learning enhances teacher engagement to facilitate the online components of course work. Blended learning includes online quizzes, activities, discussion groups, assignments, and videos, all which require a teacher to create, monitor and mark. Content is very much dependant on teachers to deliver. In addition, blended learning is also composed of in-class learning components. So in fact, teachers are essential to both components of blended learning - online, and in-class. The online learning component should compliment, and complete the in-class content.
- Myth # 4 - Blended Learning is not effective.
In fact, blended learning increases productivity and success in learners. In a study with over 30,000 students, blended learning allowed students to achieve 25% more than their non-blended learning counterparts. The online component of blended learning allows learners to work at their own pace, it allows for quicker feedback on assignments and questions, it is more engaging, and it allows for more organized peer discussions.
Blended Learning is not edging out in-class learning, instead it is harmonizing tradition and technology – It’s the best of both worlds. Traditional learning certainly has its benefits, but times are changing, as our world is becoming more and more digital. We have to learn to adapt to these changes, and meet new learning needs as they arise.
If you’re curious about the methodology of blended learning and want to learn more about the tools to effectively implement a blended learning approach, check out our webinar on the blended learning breakthrough for more information.