Blended Learning Benefits, Techniques, and Implementation Strategy
Though live instructor-led training programs may never completely go out of style, blended learning techniques are a powerful way to complement them with web-based solutions.
Before we dive in, it’s important to first understand the most effective ways organizations should adopt blending learning techniques. Instructors and learners can both benefit from improved efficiencies through blended learning to accomplish learner and corporate objectives. Let’s discuss a few key ingredients to build an optimal blended learning strategy, the ways in which these techniques can benefit your bottom line, and also review one of BenchPrep’s partners’ success in implementing a blended learning program.
Design a balanced approach:
Developing an appropriate combination of learning methods can be complex. Knowing how, when, and most importantly why, digital components should be introduced into a non-digital curriculum will ultimately yield the most effective and efficient recipe for the learner experience.
Digital resources such as webinars, video tutorials, pre-recorded lessons, digital discussion boards, and supplemental reading and assessments should be offered to ensure learners can get the most out of a training or development program. These resources should not necessarily be used to introduce new topics to the learner for the first time or to repeat what’s already been covered in the classroom. Having them available can help aid in retention by ingraining additional examples and tutorials of certain materials, while also providing a platform for learners to revisit content that might require additional time to digest.
Let’s not forget about the on-demand convenience factor either. Developing a curriculum and study plan around these basic principles that balance classroom and supplemental digital learning tactics will ensure learners have access to content that will help them reach their full potential, while following a cohesive, yet blended roadmap.
Arm instructors with action-oriented analytics:
The most important questions an instructor should ask themselves when developing a blended learning curriculum is, “what is the best use of face-to-face class time” and “how can digital tactics supplement that time?” Finding a good balance between the two should guide instructors on the usefulness of digital resources to reinforce lessons, test learner knowledge, and provide added value to enhance the learner experience outside of the classroom. Such analytics can also assist instructors in evaluating:
- Which classroom lessons are most effective
- What additional training may be needed
- Learner confidence levels on an individual or group level
- Resource and time management
Real-time performance data analytics provide instructors with unique insight to develop an outcome-driven course plan tailored directly to learner needs.
Improve the learner experience:
Participating in live classroom training courses often feel burdensome for learners, particularly those who have demanding schedules and expectations on the job. While there is still tremendous value in traditional face-to-face learning for the introduction and transfer of complex information from an expert to a learner, supplemental digital features via blended learning offers personalized pathways for learners to engage in new and challenging study tasks to achieve their ultimate goals. Adaptive digital features tools include:
- Practice tests
- Gamified activities
- Other customized learning programs
Put your money to work:
According to Training Magazine’s 2017 Industry Report, U.S. companies averaged $1,075 per learner on training and development expenditures, up 32% from 2016. This statistic not only demonstrates the commitment organization’s make to invest in employee development, but also aligns with the growing importance of continuing education for employees to enhance personal skill sets that position them to stay competitive in the marketplace.
Following the key steps discussed above regarding the tactics, analytics, and implementation of effective blended learning solutions will ensure your investment dollars generate the highest potential ROI.
Comprehensive learning solutions are the answer:
BenchPrep understands that one-size learning does not fit all. Our learner success platform offers a Curriculum Feature allowing instructors to curate personalized courses and assignments for cohorts. This proprietary and adaptive tool targets each learner and supplements ILT and VILT with tangible digital assignments, content, and activities.
Richardson, one of BenchPrep’s partners, incorporated a blended learning strategy into its sales training program to drive higher engagement and results. Check out the video below to witness their success and how they leverage BenchPrep’s platform.
Learn more about BenchPrep’s learner success platform and how to effectively implement blended learning into your program.