Whether in the world of higher education or within the corporate training landscape, finding functional learning approaches is essential. Often, this includes both the coursework itself and the delivery method. Ensuring that the information is simultaneously accessible and engaging.
Due to COVID-19, purely classroom-based approaches fell out of vogue. Gathering with the instructor and other students wasn’t permitted during parts of 2020 in many areas. As a result, blended learning increasingly became a norm.
Even though the pandemic is calming, blended learning remains part of the picture. However, the precise strategy may vary a bit as gatherings become safer. If you are wondering what blended learning really looks like in 2021, here’s what you need to know.
What Is Blended Learning?
Generally speaking, blended learning is any educational approach that includes both in-classroom and digital components. This means moving behind technological supplementation. Instead, technology involves purely digitally-delivered course material.
For example, a blended program involves an instructor-led module and a separate online-only module. Alternatively, it could involve an in-person lecture that’s coupled with digital coursework or forums. Both approaches work together but act as individual entities.
In most cases, blended learning involves synchronous and asynchronous learning elements. The instructor-led segments typically occur live, with students attending the session as it takes place. The digital part can be completed at any time, as long as any assignment deadlines are met.
What Does Blended Learning Look Like in 2021?
In 2021, blended learning embraces technology more fully. For example, the in-classroom segments may actually be digital, taking the form of live webinars. Ultimately, it replicates the traditional classroom experience while providing opportunities for social distancing and enhanced health safety.
However, as the year progresses classroom-based learning is shifting. While remote options are still available, physical classrooms are reopening, particularly in the higher education sector. The transition back may occur as quickly as the move away from in-person learning occurred for many institutions. Though others may slowly work their way back to the traditional approach.
For the online elements, blended learning is becoming more refined. Issues like enhancing student engagement were thrust to the forefront during the pandemic. Ensuring that online delivery of the materials was effective. Interactive elements, collaboration, microlearning modules, and customized learning paths grew to prominence, particularly in the corporate training sector.
Ultimately, blended learning is evolving in 2021. The digital components are becoming more robust, which benefits all learners. Additionally, classroom-based approaches are using many of the lessons learned during the pandemic to augment the experience, ensuring that the return to in-person instruction is a beneficial one.
Are You Ready to Update Your Blended Learning Strategy?
If you need support from learning and development (L&D) pros to update your blended learning strategy for 2021, Clarity Consultants wants to hear from you. Clarity has more than 25 years of L&D sector experience, giving you access to industry experts that can help you achieve your goals. Plus, the Clarity team can become your L&D candidate search allies, making it easier to find and secure the top talent you need to succeed.
If you’d like to partner with a leading L&D team that can make achieving your learning program goals as simple as possible, Clarity Consultants is here. Contact us today.