Hybrid/Blended Learning: Combining the Best of Virtual and “In-Person” Education
If you work for a library, you are making the virtual world work for you and your colleagues, students, patrons, and stakeholders:
1. You’ve moved programming and reference services online.
2. You participate in virtual staff meetings.
3. Your library customers and co-workers contact you via phone, email, fax, and various sharing apps, plus waving as they walk or drive by the building.
4. And, depending on the scope of your public, academic, or school library’s services, you teach online, partnering in the delivery of classes for homeschoolers, pre-school, K-12 and for institutions of higher learning.
Attending online has many benefits as compared to a traditional in-person classroom, which meets only at one time and one physical place. Your library users and staff can attend a live or recorded webcast with their feet up, in pajamas, with a cozy lap cat, and a handy bowl of hot, buttered popcorn. Students can complete class requirements at 2 am, visit with classmates all over the world, and finish the assignments at their convenience. Depending on the platform, they can interact via text without being judged on how they look or sound, or how assertively they speak up.
But, since most people have spent years in traditional classrooms, the digital version can feel like a second-rate experience. The need for structured presentations can reduce the spontaneity–and serendipity–of an in-person meeting. And, sometimes, even with interactive components, it’s easier for online attendees to disengage online. Multi-tasking is a common practice during live and recording virtual presentations.
The best solution? Combining virtual and in-person educational strategies with an appropriate mix of technology. Learn several models that can work with both adults and children who participate in your library’s classes. (And you don’t necessarily need an expensive computer platform to make it work!)
Following this webinar, you will know how to:
• Apply the Gold Standard for creating blended/hybrid classes: Retention, motivation, and application.
• Expand learning beyond YouTube, Ted Talks, and webinars (like this one).
• Take advantage of social media platforms such as Facebook and LinkedIn for group discussions.
• Move activities offline into participants’ workplaces and lives.
Pat Wagner is a trainer and consultant with 40 years of experience working for libraries, universities, local government, nonprofits, and small businesses. She supports the success of libraries with programs on personnel, supervision, management, leadership, marketing, strategic planning, project management, and communication. Pat has worked with libraries and library organizations throughout the United States, from the smallest rural storefronts to the largest academic and urban library institutions. Pat also is a frequent speaker at state and national conferences. She is known for her good-humored and practical presentations.