Tuesday, 22 April 2008

Blended learning....what is it...really...?

Over the past couple of years I have put in a solid core training framework for my organisation. Now is the time to take it forward to another level......by putting in place a blended approach to learning.

I thought it would be interested to ask my linked in network what blended learning meant to them. An interesting set of responses - check out some examples:

"Blended development is the mixing and mashing of different software/web) development frameworks. I can't imagine it otherwise than being or becoming a mess actually."

Brendan Duffy provides a perhaps more business focused view:

"I notice that more of my clients in Europe expect all major learning programs to be 'blended' driven by cost, travel, workload, organisational and flexibilty issues; in highly distributed and virtual organisations it is increasinlgly difficult to get all of the people in the same room at the same time"

This is something I can certainly associate with even with learning programs that are just in the UK!

Another linked in contract provides another valuable view:

"Because adults do not learn best using all the same style, blended learning is able to pull the "best of the best" for a particular topic and deliver it to the learners in a way that has greater impact than if just one delivery method (e.g. self study or videos) were used. It typically involves a more robust learning model, such as: show me, teach me, let me try, and test me."

And finally.....a simple definition from a long lost linked in colleague:

"Tell Me I Forget, Show Me I remember, Involve Me I Understand"

Well, for me the blended bit certainly means providing a variety of channels for people to learn. These don't all have to be training channels such as eLearning or Classroom courses. For me picking up on the 'Involve me I understand' view is creating your own learning experiences through on the job work or stretch assignments.

Would love to hear more of your views....

1 comment:

David Wilson said...

Chris - this is an interesting debate that has been running for some time. Here's a link to a presentation outlining some findings from one of our research projects. http://www.elearnity.com/A555F3/research/research.nsf/ByKey/DWIN6FJFFR

Informally, my view is the L&D has adopted the language whilst largely ducking the reality of blended learning. There is a lack of deeper thinking and practice of what blended learning should be about in corporates. Too much is still constrained by the comfort factor of workshops, and the economics of classroom based delivery.