COVID-19 has changed education in unprecedented ways. While blended teaching and learning is not new, the COVID-19 pandemic has fast-tracked the transition to digital education.
With the rapid integration of virtual and face-to-face learning at all educational levels in Singapore, it is important for educators to understand the benefits of blended learning in order to fully utilise it and maximise learning outcomes. This article explores the positive outcomes of blended learning for both educators and students.
Students are better engaged
To vie for students’ attention, educators need to be able to conduct classes in an interactive yet informative manner. Blended learning gives educators greater flexibility to create innovative lesson plans to better engage with their learners as compared to the traditional in-class teaching approach.
For example, educators are able to integrate gamification into their lessons, making classes more fun and memorable, which leads to better knowledge retention and more effective learning.
With online educational platforms, educators can conduct simple games and activities such as quizzes or polls to get students involved in learning and ensure that they are paying attention throughout the lessons.
Easier access to educational resources
To support blended learning, student portals are developed to allow students to download their study materials at any time and anywhere. Learners who have busy schedules and would require the convenience of retrieving resources outside of curriculum hours would benefit the most from these platforms.
In addition, the rise of learning technologies presents tremendous opportunities for students to learn and acquire knowledge in innovative ways such as attending webinars and lessons overseas without having to be there physically. This allows many students who are struggling with travel restrictions to gain access to quality education.
Personalised learning to cater to different learning needs
Students have different learning needs. Some are fast learners while others just need to take a little more time to understand the subject materials. With blended learning, educators can create different types of content that are tailored to engage students with different learning styles. For example, educators can leverage the online Learning Management Systems (LMSs) to produce a variety of educational content, such as videos, podcasts, games etc to engage different types of learners.
Students take greater ownership in learning
As good as an educator can get, it is also the student’s responsibility to take charge of their own learning. With the availability of online resources, students can pace themselves according to their individual speed of learning.
In summary, technology-supported learning certainly promotes greater student involvement. Through blended learning, educators are empowered with the flexibility to create meaningful learning experiences that engage students with diverse backgrounds, experiences, and skills to achieve the desired learning outcomes.
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