BLENDED LEARNING IMPLEMENTATION IN UNIVERSITIES by [Author’s Name] 15 March 2012 Blended Learning Implementation in Universities Introduction Blended learning is a buzzword in contemporary education research. The body of literature describing the benefits of blended learning in higher education constantly increases…
Unfortunately, not all universities have a clear view on how blended learning can be implemented. The goal of this paper is to highlight the most important points and offer a strategic framework for the development and implementation of blended learning strategies in higher education. The paper includes the definition and discussion of blended learning, the main criteria of effectiveness in blended learning environments, possible ways to implement blended learning in the classroom, and a common framework for higher education institutions seeking to implement the blended learning approach. Blended learning: models and implementation Regardless of the goals and objectives of blended learning in universities, the process of implementing blended learning models in higher education mandates the development of strong and complex program implementation frameworks. The overall process of developing and implementing blended learning programs includes the following elements: institutional, pedagogical, technological, design, evaluation and management, support and ethics (Singh 2003). This is actually a unique and extremely useful implementation framework that was proposed by Singh (2003). ...
ecide whether it possesses technical and personnel capabilities required, to guarantee that all learners have equal access to blended learning instruments. At this stage of implementation, universities need to perform a detailed needs analysis, to understand what learners need and how blended learning can satisfy their needs. This is the planning stage of the implementation process in blended learning, which must include both strategic and operational aspects (Garrison & Kanuka 2004). In strategic terms, universities must necessarily evaluate the needs, objectives and goals of blended learning, its potential benefits, costs and the availability of resources (Garrison & Kanuka 2004). Operational planning has to be considered, in order to operationalize the goals and objective of blended learning and turn them into an action plan (Garrison & Kanuka 2004). For example, universities may develop advertising strategies to engage learners in blended contexts or attend to the needs of managing technologies effectively. Then follow the pedagogical and technological considerations. Universities that seek to implement blended learning approaches must decide upon the content to be included in the blend, the learning objectives to be met, and the learner needs (Singh 2003). In other words, here education professionals link the needs of learners to the learning objectives and the instruments to be used, to help learners meet these learning objectives. For example, if learners are expected to develop a new product or marketing model, then product simulation can become an essential component of the blend (Singh 2003). Once these delivery methods are identified, universities can proceed to decide upon the types of technologies to be used in blended learning. Here, technical ...
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. Similarly, an understanding of benefits and limitation of each instruction strategy, integrated with an understanding of learners’ learning skills, helps an instructor to align applied methods to learners’ abilities for effective learning. The integrated knowledge can also help an instructor to balance between applicable online instructions in order to manage associated weaknesses.
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