Teaching Online Title Beginner's Guide Heading with Picture of Ignition  

Hybrid/Blended Courses

Projected Proportion
of Taught Courses

online versus f2f

Hybrid or blended courses include both F2F components (such as lecture and office hours) and online components (such as Dbs, testing, and assignments). See the right sidebar for course type distinctions in our district. A hybrid class typically reduces on-site class time by about half, so that a F2F M/W class would have an equivalent hybrid class meeting only one of those days (M or W) on campus - the remaining time would be spent with online activities. Another example, could be a science class where the lab is on-campus, but information and testing is presented online.

In fact, using online components in today's classes is not really a choice at all (see projection on the left). All teachers at least use email now. Using F2F components only is much too limiting for modern students and teachers - a mixture is much more effective. Yes, adding more online components can be more work (and bring on more headaches) at first, but it is also more convenient and adds more variety to the students' learning experience. Each instructor needs to find their own balance between the two formats.

Comparable Activities

 
F2F
Online
Chalkboard

Lecture
(presenting information - lecture, projection systems, demonstrations)

PowerPoint or Flash Presentations, Video Lectures, iPod lectures, Blogs
Classroom

Discussion
(interaction with students - questions, personal applications, debates, explanations)

Discussion Boards, Chat Sessions, Wikis
Office

Office Hours
(few hours a week for student walk-in visits)

24/7 Email or Chat Office Hours
Writing

Paper & Pencil Tests
(Scantron, blue book, essay, paper and pencil)

Online Tests
Grading

Manual Grade Sheet
(either on paper, software program, or using Excel)

Bb Grade Center
(mostly automated)

Labs

On Site Labs
(equipment, tools, technicians present)

Online (or at home) Lab Simulations
Paper

Handouts and Manual Assignment Collection
(papers, projects, homework)

Online Assignment Posting and Submission
crowd

Group Work
(meet in classroom, library, or off-campus)

Assign to Online Groups
with email, Db, chat contacts

How one divides and mixes these activities (on-site versus online) depends on the instructor or on course demands. For example, in a biology lab class, lab could be on-campus while lecture could be online via presentations - or lab could be online via simulations and lecture could be on-campus. Some might prefer discussion in the classroom, while others might find it works better online in Dbs. For those worried about security, testing could be done on-site with other components online. Yet, for others, the convenience of online testing might be preferable.

WARNING: Some instructors have found hybrid courses to be disappointing for the following reasons:

  • students sign up thinking a hybrid course will be easy (since it meets on-campus only one day, rather than two per week) or have misconceptions about the online components
  • students seem to commit to the online part or others to the F2F part, but not to both
  • students consider the online components "homework" rather than half of the required class time (hence, any actual homework is considered excessive)
  • although preparation for a hybrid class might be less workload than preparation for an online class, the teaching workload can be demanding since one is then managing both online and lecture components without the benefits of either
  • the is no double LED for first time teaching a hybrid class (see the sidebar - Definitions)
Top of Page up arrow

 

 

Sidebar - In Focus

Man at Computer with CameraDEFINITIONS>
UF and contract definitions of delivery formats.

 

Stack of books INTERVIEW>
Susan Haber talks about her experience with hybrid courses.