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What is a Hybrid Learning? Why Hybrid Learning is Here to Stay

October 27, 2021
Alina Krukova

Alina Krukova

Categories: Reviews

Definition of Hybrid Learning

Hybrid learning is a sophisticated combination of both in-person and online learning. This model combines traditional in-class experience and the use of multimedia materials shared online.

The virtual elements of the hybrid learning should be complementary to the in-person ones. The advantages of this way of learning can include closer interaction between peers, greater involvement in educational courses, a more flexible schedule, and an interactive learning experience.

Definition of Blended Learning

Blended learning means an educational method in which the student/scholar learns both individually online and with a teacher. This approach allows you to control the time, place and pace of learning a material. Because in-person learning provides obvious important verbal and sociocultural skills, blended learning combines traditional methods with modern information technology. Thus, blended education becomes an approach that educational institutions can apply “here and now”б actualizing an educational process. Here are a few benefits of blended learning:

  • Convenient for everyone. Blended learning accommodates all types of learners, whether they prefer the well-known traditional classroom, want to learn online, or are trying a combination of both.
  • Efficient allocation of resources. This training model helps you plan your time by scheduling meetings and hands-on activities in both virtual and in-person formats. The basic principle: save time, effort, and money, but get maximum efficiency from the meeting.
  • Individual approach. It is possible for a teacher to vary materials and adjust the speed of learning, depending on the interests, busyness, goals, and abilities of students.

Blended vs. Hybrid Learning

Understanding the difference between these two learning methods is important to help you figure out the best distance strategy for a teacher and students. The similarities between hybrid and blended learning are that both of these methods use information technology to support and supplement education. However, blended learning does not allow students to attend classes virtually, and the instructor does not record the lectures or upload them online later. Hybrid learning, on the other hand, allows asynchronous learning with a teacher.

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Definition of Hyflex

HyFlex combines the terms “hybrid” and “flexible”. HyFlex, course format unites additional in-class (synchronous) and online (asynchronous) learning to achieve desired educational goals. Students can change their study schedules and decide how and when to participate, depending on their personal preferences and interests. This allows them to keep learning at their own pace without hurrying or slowing down the rest of the students.

With HyFlex learning, answers are properly recorded and materials are provided based on students’ abilities. The flexibility of the HyFlex model shows a passion for student success, and this flexibility can also empower institutions to support educational and research activities during disruptions.

Teaching HyFlex

4 Benefits of Hybrid Learning

Over the past decade, many instructors have seamlessly embraced hybrid learning as a tool for the classroom and beyond. The success of hybrid learning stems from the following major advantages:

Flexible Education

A lot of institutions want to move to hybrid learning for the sake of flexible schedules and learning modes, and easier collaboration between peers and teachers. For those students who are unable to attend classes physically, these learning environments allow them to study remotely.

The global COVID-19 pandemic has forced hundreds of thousands of educational institutions to move to distance learning, and the necessity of educational flexibility has become even more apparent. So even when COVID-19 becomes a creepy distant memory, flexibility can remain extremely useful.

Will students or instructors in the future feel comfortable coming into the classroom with a cough or runny nose? Schools and other educational institutions will likely need new regulations and guidelines to keep bacteria from spreading as quickly as it did. If your classrooms are equipped with hybrid learning tools, it won’t be difficult for students and instructors to join remotely if they’re sick and can’t attend class but would still like to participate.

Extended Learning Access

For educational institutions, such increased access to learning also means that they can engage students from a wider range of locations. Not all people who want higher education have affordable opportunities to go to colleges and universities. This may be because the pandemic currently makes travel unsafe, or because people do not have the money to pay for face-to-face classes.

As schools, colleges, and universities expand their learning opportunities, people can choose to study online. By being located anywhere, students can participate in their classes just as they would in the classroom, making it possible to open educational programs and courses for international students without the need to move them. At the same time, it does not disturb those students who want to learn in-person.

Furthermore, hybrid learning is likely to provide greater access to education for people with disabilities. For example, thanks to the EdTech integration, text-to-speech and vice versa functions are available.

Effective Resource Management

Another significant benefit of hybrid learning is its ability to boost teaching resources. Teachers may divide students into small groups (face-to-face students and those who study remotely) which allows better space management and the use of small classes for more students.

In addition, using hybrid learning can help teachers cope with overworking, because EdTech’s helpful technology will make the creation of course materials more streamlined. Since hybrid learning provides an opportunity to combine in-person and distance learning, the same course can fit both styles.

Less Absenteeism

Hybrid learning can also be especially helpful in the case of long absences, for example, chronic illnesses. Since classes are often recorded and then uploaded online, students who miss class due to valid reasons can easily catch up on missed material later.

It is no secret that absenteeism has a negative impact on students’ academic performance. Furthermore, the issue creates a cycle that is difficult to break: falling grades become a predictor of future absenteeism.

How To Set Up a Hybrid Classroom?

1.Invest in education technology that engages students

School administrators and IT departments should research and gather information about the best, most reliable, and engaging and easy-to-use learning technologies. You’ll want to make sure you buy technology that both improves your teachers’ ability to teach effectively and helps their students.

2.Teach your teachers

During the COVID-19 pandemic, many teachers found themselves simply unprepared for online teaching. Sending your teachers regularly for ongoing training will help them develop the skills and techniques they need to engage and teach their subject matter.

The learning process may take some time while teachers and assistants explore and try different techniques. Encourage experimentation and allow for failure while teachers find the right hybrid combination for themselves and their students.

3.Introduce hybrid teaching gradually (if possible)

To help teachers and students adapt to new teaching methods faster and better, create a multi-level and staggered plan for implementing a robust hybrid environment. Don’t try to learn everything at once.

4.Provide access to reliable hardware and software

As we mentioned earlier, there’s a lot that can go into the best setup for your school district. For a perfect hybrid learning experience, first of all you need to choose a video conferencing platform that would suit your education facility’s requirements, provide stable meeting experience and would enable your learners to engage wherever they are.

How To Set Up a Hybrid Classroom?

There are also some other EdTech items to consider when assembling an optimal learning environment include:

  • Laptops
  • Video conferencing equipment
  • Smart boards
  • Screen-sharing tech
  • Online whiteboards
  • Learning management systems
  • Education apps

Once you have the appropriate hardware and software, create a plan or system for distribution, engagement, and management. Allow the teachers to pick the tech they feel will best suit their classroom and students’ goals.

Final Thoughts

Hybrid learning is a completely new way to provide education in ever-changing post-pandemic circumstances, when self-isolation and strict lockdown limitations can literally save lives. Hybrid learning eliminates barriers and makes education accessible to any person with a smartphone or a PC and internet connection. For schools, universities and private teachers it is really important to explore infinite opportunities that video conferencing technology can bring and provide innovative learning experiences to pupils and students, no matter where they are and what platform they are using.

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Download for free

For an all-in-one consistent hybrid learning experience, you can try TrueConf! TrueConf offers integrated virtual classroom space with a special mode that brings full focus to the teacher. With TrueConf, you can run unlimited meetings with up to 1,000 participants, organize webinars and even stream your classes to YouTube, while our APIs and SDKs allow for quick integration with any LMS.

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