An online blended learning course supporting personalized learning is being developed by researchers at the University of Kansas.
The course helps teachers move to student centered learning, by showing them how to create blended learning environments, thus increasing opportunities for personalized learning. So far, the teachers find the course helpful in providing guidance and support for planning and the process of shifting to a blended learning model.
KU’s Center for Research on Learning developed the online course with support from the OAK Foundation. It helps teachers identify what they want in their courses, design and implement lesson plans, and understand blended learning. In Kansas, the Lawrence Public Schools’ blended learning initiative is supported by the course, and the course is being piloted in Virginia schools.
“If the entire group of students jumped in a pool with the intention of getting to the other side (meeting the learning objective or standard), some would need water wings, others would automatically swim to the other side, some might work together to build a raft, others might get out of the pool and walk around it, and others would look to the teacher to help them across,” said the iNACOL 2015 Blended Learning Teacher of the Year Paula Barr. “Similarly, a blended learning environment allows a more personalized approach to instruction with students receiving the support they need. For example, in a blended learning environment, some students would work together on a research project, another might work with a teacher in a one-to-one arrangement, and other students would be using technology to learn content. However, there is a caveat. Designing a blended learning environment and Implementing in an actual classroom is not a simple task.”