Blended learning: the benefits of online and offline learning
If we can agree on one thing, it is that the Covid-19 pandemic has brought new dynamics into the world of learning & development. Businesses were quick to switch over to e-learning. Distance learning has become so entrenched, that a time when students only had lessons at a physical location has been seemingly long forgotten.
In the post-Covid era, should e-learning be our only option? The answer is no, because offline learning has many advantages. In fact, blended learning – a combination of online and offline training – offers the biggest guarantee of success. So, how come?
The best of both worlds
By combining the benefits of online and offline learning, handsome rewards can be had. The mix enables you to gain from the strength of digital support and the presence of an enthusiastic teacher offering hands-on help. So it’s a win-win, where students and teachers can get the best out of themselves and each other. You could say its a win-win-win, because your business too, stands to gain from blended learning. But what is the ideal mix on online and offline learning?
Offline learning is human, motivational and active
The trainer as motivator
We’ve all experienced it: the quality of a course succeeds or fails at the hands of the trainer. Nothing has quite so much impact as receiving direct instructions from an impassioned teacher able to captivate your attention. Someone who is able to explain, ask questions, establish links, provide answers, and who repeats, several times over if necessary. What’s more, a trainer can pick up on a student’s problems, providing immediate feedback and coaching if the student is having a hard time of it.
So does a trainer have no online role? On the contrary.
Learning together is motivational
Nothing beats meeting someone in person. That’s no less true in an educational setting. It brings learning to life, and that leads to motivation, for both learners and teachers. It increases the prospects of interaction, helping you to understand your students better, as well as your own style of teaching. All that – with short, light-hearted moments punctuating the more serious ones – provides the ideal mix.
Active learning means improved learning
Course participants who process their subject matter actively, are better learners. Activities, such as brainstorming, experimenting, researching, discussing, arguing, presenting, etc., are all elements that go towards greater learning involvement. And the greater the involvement, the greater the motivation, and the more easily the subject matter can be retained.
Online learning: flexible, more efficient and scalable
The flexibility of digital learning
E-learning can take place anywhere, any time and no matter how. You are no longer dependent on place or time. Students can choose what works for them best from different forms. This might, for example, be flexible learning paths, where the student determines for himself/herself the ideal tempo and the ideal content on the learning platform. It allows you to combine learning with a busy working or family life.
The trainer too is able to benefit from this flexibility, since he or she does not need to be there on the spot. Feedback can be given via online communication tools or targeted instructional videos. This means less organisation and less travelling.
Multimedial teaching leads to improved learning outcomes
Research has shown that the combination of text, image, audio and video results in improved learning performance. That goes a lot further than your traditional PowerPoint. You should seek out innovation and learning efficacy.
E-learning is both scalable and cheaper
A good online course can be implemented at any moment for an unlimited number of students. By making the processes, the learning management system (LMS) and the (online) courses scalable, a greater number of students can be reached and with less effort.
E-learning also works out cheaper in the long term. It requires less organisation and the higher start-up costs can be quickly recouped, since the course can be used again and again.
Is blended learning an option?
It is the ideal moment to think about the future of your training courses. Are you going to continue with digital activities alone, or will you go back to offline training sessions? Or will you take advantage of blended learning? We’re happy to provide you with tips for blended training.
Are you not sure whether your training activities are adequate? The Acco Learn Quick Scan helps let you know quickly if you have made the right choices.