The big benefits of blended learning
Posted on 25th July, 2017 by Ben Miller
When you think about all the different ways in which people like to take in information, offering as much choice as possible gives everyone the best chance of building the knowledge they need to succeed. It’s little wonder that blended learning is on the rise.
In education, studies have shown that more than three quarters of teachers believe that a blended learning programme benefits learners – but its relatively new possibilities occasionally remain misunderstood. In the new LEO ebook, ‘Why blended learning works (and can work for you!)’, we’ve outlined several case studies and examples of successful blended learning programmes.
Blended learning may not be for everyone but as the global workforce becomes increasingly time-poor and distracted, knowing the benefits of blended learning can be the difference between creating dynamic and engaging learning, and training that simply doesn’t land.
Want to know more about the advantages of blended learning? Here are a few of them.
It makes the most of technology
Keeping track of new technologies can be tough, but it’s also rewarding and keeps you ahead of the game. That doesn’t mean you need to try to use every new technology that materialises, but learners will expect your courses to be innovative and adapt to new platforms. Think about which options will truly enhance your learners’ experience and give them the most flexibility. After all, blended learning is more than just computer-based training; it’s about leveraging technology to create a blend of different learning methods and modalities.
It lets people learn where they like
While blended learning has often been wrongly perceived as purely distance learning, a blended approach does give people the opportunity to work wherever it suits them. Digital learning gives people the opportunity to interact with their peers and assessors, take tests and receive feedback at home or when they’re on the move, while still enjoying the human touch of face-to-face training and evaluation.
It allows learners to revisit
LEO’s own research has found that spacing learning enables people to learn little and often over time. There are long-established theories on the existence of a “forgetting curve” (as defined by Dr Hermann Ebbinghaus), which sees knowledge being lost without sufficient support and practice over time. From sales training customer-facing staff in the retail world to product training for pharma and life sciences workers, giving learners the opportunity to refresh their memory combats this curve much more effectively than relying on memory alone.
It maximises business impact
Research has also shown that top-performing companies are more than twice as likely to report boosted performance through innovative use of learning technologies in L&D. Having the right method of learning carefully tailored for particular organisations, type of learners and situations is ultimately good for business. There is a clear business case for blended learning, as demonstrated by an International Data Corporation report which concluded that providing the broadest possible learning experience “optimises productivity” and “delivers value”.
It meets an appetite for learning
You might think that designing learning with the learners in mind sounds obvious, but there is quite a disparity between the ambition of learning designers and the reality of training courses. Research has found that almost all L&D leaders want to see an increase in independent learning through technologies, but only a quarter are managing to do so. Nine out of 10 workers also want to take responsibility for their own learning in order to increase their productivity.
Want to know more about blended learning? Download your free copy of our ebook, ‘Why blended learning works’.