Blended Education Model
About Blended Learning
Blended learning is an educational approach where the traditional classroom is integrated with an online component. A web-based Learning Management System (LMS) contains curriculum and course materials, and ties the two learning environments (classroom + online) together.
In a blended learning model, the teacher conducts lessons during scheduled class sessions and students are assigned independent study online. The student receives face-to-face instruction during class meetings, and then logs into the LMS for independent study (or virtual group collaboration) to continue their learning and to complete assignments.
We like the definition of blended learning provided by The Innosight Institute in their 2011 study: "Blended learning is any time a student learns at least in part at a supervised brick-and-mortar location away from home and at least in part through online delivery with some element of student control over time, place, path, and/or pace."
At Thesys, we think about blended learning as an educational approach that optimizes student learning by utilizing the right tools at the right times. We believe that the future of education technology is to provide teachers with tools that inspire kids and that ultimately enhance the classroom experience.
Blended Education Research + Studies
The blended learning model is quickly garnering interest and favor. In 2009, the US Department of Education published a report stating that "students in online learning conditions performed better than those receiving face-to-face instruction." The US Department of Education noted that "the difference between student outcomes for online and face-to-face classes was larger in those studies contrasting conditions that blended elements of online and face-to-face instruction with conditions taught entirely face-to-face."
In 2011, The Innosight Institute published a study titled The Rise of K12 Blended Learning that described six models of blended learning.
"One of my favorite asynchronous exercises is peer collaboration/editing of essays and projects. The students truly enjoy sharing their work with others. Through discussion groups, students have the opportunity to improve their writing and get more ideas from others in class."
- Holly Wilson (English Teacher)