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Crafting a Blended Learning Strategy

Learning Series – (Part 1)

Like even the most complex decisions, blended learning strategies are rooted in the basics. Upfront instructional design is required for truly meaningful learning. Review your organization’s culture and structure to determine whether a learner-centric or business-centric approach is best for the design and implementation of learning in your environment. The model can be distilled into one of two types: a linear model or a hub-based model. From this design stage, the next step is to factor in the various types of training media or modes that best suit your training program and its audience. If you can address these main components, you are well on your way to launching some of the best learning tools and techniques.

Overview

Perhaps one of the most difficult aspects associated with today’s blended learning solutions isn’t in the technology or bandwidth; it’s understanding that successful blended learning is firmly rooted in sound instructional design strategies – design strategies that focus on transferring skills and knowledge to the learner while delivering value to the business.

In any competitive business environment where time, resources, and money is the differentiators, your people are your competitive edge. Leveraging the value of your people relies heavily on deploying the right learning solutions and having learning solutions that effectively transfer skills and knowledge to participants in a timely fashion. So what type of learning solution is truly the right solution? As it turns out, the answer is blended learning; however, the media, modes, and makeup of each training solution should be different, depending on a number of variables.

At Futureshift, we base our learning strategies on determining what those variables are and how they will impact the learning process. Before deciding upon training media or modes, Futureshift recommends that you assess and investigate your proposed approach. Make sure your targeted training approach can achieve both learning and knowledge transfer expectations and deliver business-tangible and measurable results.

What Is Blended Learning?

Futureshift defines blended learning as the combination of synchronous (e.g., face-to-face training) with asynchronous (e.g., computer-based or alternative media) training that creates the best possible learning solution for a given target audience.

Blended Learning Definition

Blended learning is the combination of synchronous (e.g., face-to-face training) with asynchronous (e.g., computer-based or alternative media) training that creates the best possible learning solution for a given target audience.

Mastering the new instructional avenues that technology continues to provide can result in some of the best learning programs ever made available. Blended learning provides multiple modalities in which participants can explore and learn. Yet for all its attraction, blended learning also can be fraught with many dangers, too, the worst cases involving staggering amounts of money for beautiful and elaborate sessions that are poorly received and ultimately never used or valued. Blended learning isn’t the issue; it’s the decisions made associated with it that may lead to negative experiences. Blended learning is by far the best learning solution available today—as long as we have done due diligence, which we will discuss in our next series of posts.

Next Post – Learning Series – Why Blended Learning Strategy (Part 2)

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