Blended learning is one of the fastest growing sectors of education.
Due to its nature of mixing technology with the traditional approach of teaching-learning, it has surely influenced a lot of educators to give it a shot. However, some misconceptions still keep a lot of people away from trying this one-really-awesome-approach!
Below are some common myths-debunked.
1. Blended Learning is Distant Learning
This is one of the most common myths around using this approach. A lot of people have this misconception that blended learning is physically and emotionally distant. However, it is not true. A lot of educators who are suing this approach say that they are being able to connect more ith their students than before. There are simply more ways to talk once we have removed time and space boundaries. Additionally, educators found that many students who would refrain from raising a hand to ask for help will very easily send me a private chat message.
2. Blended learning is online learning
Another misconception among people is that blended learning is online learning or some online course. However, the keyword in the approach “blended” in itself explains that though online approach is used it is not entirely online program. Blended learning classrooms use mixture of online and offline activities to help improve instruction for students. Not all things that we do in classroom can be done online and similarly a lot of efficiency can be brought in by use of technology in classroom which cannot happen otherwise. So blended learning is the perfect mix of online and offline learning to support the students in the best way possible.
3. All students do is complete online content
Some educators believe blended learning is when you put your entire course into a learning management system and students work on it 100% asynchronously. Students may physically come to class but they work individually on the online course during class time. This model ignores some of the positive benefits of face-to-face interactions that can occur in a classroom. Said this, it is one big reason for people not willing to try blended learning. This is not true. Blended learning does require students to study online but that completely depends on the technology teachers are using and to what extent they are incorporating technology in class. As said in the previous point, it is a mix of both online and offline practices.
4. All blended learning classrooms are student centered
Just because a teacher uses online learning resources to supplement their teaching does not automatically translate to a student-centered learning environment. In both the face-to-face and online components, students need opportunities to express their voices and make decisions about their own learning in order to foster a student-centered learning environment.
It is important that all stakeholders understand that blended learning does not take less time than traditional instructional models. It also does not mean that students work in isolation or that learning is a linear process where one size fits all. When combined with research-based strategies, blended learning can provide new opportunities for students that meet a variety of different learning styles and change the learning landscape for the better.
5. Blended Curriculum in only simple. Busy Work
This is a big myth. A lot of people worry that digital curriculum equates to impersonalized, busy work. This is not true. In fact, the beauty of a blended model is that students receive an education specifically tailored to them. Students work at their pace and take as much time as needed to grasp each concept. If a student works faster than the others, she is not tied to waiting until the rest of the class is ready to move on; she can continue to learn. If a student is stuck, he can work with an instructor individually until he truly grasps the concept.
What is your take on blended learning?