Discover The Proper Studying Combine
The only limit is your imagination
Are you thinking of mixing it up with blended learning? The hype about blended learning, fueled by the need for more digital learning in this time of remote work, could lead you to consider it as an option for your business. Unfortunately, adopting any model of blended learning can cause more problems than it will solve unless your team strategically dares to do it. As with developing a learning program, it is necessary to carefully evaluate your organizational needs and make calculated decisions.
Blended learning at its best
To get the most out of blended learning, you need to understand the purpose for which blended learning was designed. Blended learning is the “best of both worlds” in the best sense of the word. Both types of learning have advantages and disadvantages – digital and face-to-face. In theory, you can take advantage of each type by combining different types of learning.
For example, if you are developing a program to teach new software, having a face-to-face session with the instructor covering all the details of the new software is likely to be very tedious and likely ineffective. However, if employees learn the software solely through interactive online lessons, they have no one to turn to with specific questions.
A blended learning model would solve these problems by offering a digital lesson on the basics of the software followed by a face-to-face interactive session in which employees try the software for the first time under the guidance of an expert.
Where to start creating a blended learning model
The key to blending learning is to do it strategically. You already know this because you are reading this article to figure out how to come up with the right mix. To achieve this, you need to take several steps before jumping right in. Here are some of the things to think about in general:
Assess your company’s needs
This is an important step in developing a learning program for your business, but it’s impossible to create the right blended learning mix without it. Assessing your company’s needs can be more complex than you think. First, ask yourself and your team the following questions:
- What problems are there with our current learning model?
- If we don’t have an up-to-date tutorial, what are the reasons for wanting to develop one?
- What are the goals of the new learning model? If the results are measurable, what numbers are we hoping for with the new program?
- What do employees think of our learning model (if we currently have one)?
- Do the employees use the current learning model? What are the engagement statistics that are relevant to employee acquisition?
- What do employees want for the future of organizational learning?
- What do managers think of the current learning model?
- What do managers want for the future of organizational learning?
- What topics or skillsets will be included in the new tutorial?
- For each topic, what’s the most effective way to teach it?
If you can’t get the answers to all of these questions out of your head, don’t worry – this is normal. However, this means that research will be an important part of the needs assessment process. Talk to key people in your company, including executives and employees. Conduct surveys. Take measurements.
It can even be a good idea to turn to outside learning and development experts. There are many companies out there who are experts in guiding organizations through this process, and outsourcing some of the work can result in fewer disruptions to day-to-day activities.
If you are developing an organization-wide program, you can expect the needs assessment process to take several months. Smaller programs may take less time to complete (for example, if your company only has fifty employees or if you want to develop a program for just one course). Be patient with this step; it will be the foundation for all of your decisions as you develop your ideal blended learning mix.
Research learning options and platforms
This may seem obvious, but it is important to familiarize yourself with everything that is out there. eLearning has become an incredibly innovative field with complex, customer-specific solutions.
Blended learning doesn’t just mean a mixture of digital and personal learning. It means a mix of in-person learning, traditional digital modules, micro-learning, just-in-time learning, LMS, LRS, interactive learning, VR, AR and more. Let your imagination run wild with what is possible.
With a workforce more familiar with digital platforms than ever before, adaptability to different types of learning is less important than it used to be. Employees are used to moving from a face-to-face meeting to their phone, computer, and other devices – sometimes across multiple platforms at the same time.
It is a good idea to work with learning development experts who are constantly updated on the new developments in their field, as they may have a good grasp of which options are generally successful in meeting your company’s learning needs.
Bring everything together
One of the challenges of blended learning is that the combination of different types of learning modes and platforms can make it much harder to keep up, distribute, and most importantly, harder to follow. Having a system in place will help identify what types of learning will make sense for you in your program.
To some extent it has to be accepted that only so much centralization is possible. There is inevitably a learning curve outside of the LMS or LXP you choose for your business, no matter how many platforms it is connected to – or how many devices it is compatible with. Modern users are used to decentralized digital experiences. For example, most people have multiple social media accounts on different platforms, all of which are used differently and target different audiences. They understand that they must use everything to get the best out of everything.
However, there are strategies to bring it all together. For example, xAPI is an incredible development that allows the company to track learning across platforms and encompasses informal learning and non-digital learning. There are even ways to keep track of the books read by the learners, the websites read by the learners, and more.
xAPI is not your only option. Talking to a few learning and development consultants can help your company develop the best way to organize, track, and centralize blended learning.
The only limit to blended learning is your imagination
Once you understand your company’s learning needs and the technologies available to you, and have developed a system that keeps everything in place, there are no limits to blended learning. Blended learning means that you no longer get stuck in your LMS. It means that learning experiences are not trapped by time and space. Finding the right mix of learning for your company is certainly a process, but a worthy process that will turn your organizational learning and development into something you never thought possible.