Overcoming Barriers to Effective Blended Learning: Research Findings to Support Student Success
Concurrent Session 4
Research findings identified best practice strategies for the design of effective blended courses. "Comfort" emerged as an important construct to mediate student success.
"Blended learning should be viewed as a pedagogical approach that combines the effectiveness and socialization opportunities of the classroom with the technologically enhanced active learning possibilities of the online environment, rather than a ratio of delivery modalities" (Dzuiban, Hartman, & Moskal, 2004, p. 3). However, there are a lot of questions and confusion around the design of blended learning courses. To provide some guidance, a research study was conducted to identify the challenges, strategies, and important elements in creating blended learning courses. The research questions explored in this research paper are:
R1. What are exemplary community college teachers' perceived obstacles to student success in blended courses?
R2. What solutions or strategies do exemplary community college teachers employ to overcome those obstacles in blended courses?
Using a case study model, interviews were conducted with faculty from various institutions and disciplines who were identified as exemplary teachers of blended learning courses. Interviews with three community college faculty members were selected for this study because of the focus on teaching and student success (Bailey, Calcagno, Jenkins, Kienzl, & Leinbach, 2005). The interviews were analyzed by the researchers to identify descriptive themes and sub-themes related to student success.
It was found that "comfort" emerged as a mediating factor for student success, with "organization," "communication," and "support" acting as supporting themes.These findings will be reported as pedagogical strategies and scalable best practices for the design of blended courses that promote student success.
Session participants will:
-Recognize the construct of "comfort" as a mitigating factor leading to student success
-Identify potential best practices and student success strategies for blended learning courses
-Select research findings appropriate for investigating in their own blended learning contexts
Bailey, T., Calcagno, J.C., Jenkins, D., Kienzl, G., & Leinbach, T. (2005). Community college student success: What institutional characteristics make a difference? CCRC Working Paper #3. Retrieved from http://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/ED489096.pdf
Moskal, P, Dziuban, C., & Hartman, J. (2013). Blended learning: A dangerous idea? Internet and Higher Education, 18, 15-23.