In discussing the concept of “blended learning,” we have previously stated that, “modern blended learning is selecting the most appropriate delivery technology based on learning objectives, with consideration of time, place, and space.” So it is, that as we consider how to assess a blended learning solution, we need to look at that statement and look at the objectives that required a training solution in the first place – finis origine pendet – “the end depends upon the beginning”.
When a blended solution is implemented, it is directed at providing learners with the opportunity to master/complete a particular set of individual learning objectives. To assess such a training approach, many will stop there, and seek to assess against the individual objectives, absent any consideration of the delivery method or specific organizational outcome that drove the individual learning objective treatment in time, place, or space.
Modern Blended Learning
And how can we measure the effect of engagement of instructional outcomes?
In my previous article, learner engagement was defined as turning on three factors:
- An emotional response to the training—How does the learner “feel” about the content and its presentation/treatment?
- An intellectual response to the training—Does the instructional experience require and involve the learner’s intellect?
- An environmental response to the learning—Do the learners interact with the learning environment and is the environment changed because of the training?
Learner engagement turns on three factors: an emotional response to the training; an intellectual response to the training; and an environmental response to the learning.
Engaging learners has always been a challenge. Not only has training evolved into a blended learning model, the “Modern Classroom” is influenced by multicultural cohorts, a mobile workforce, and social networking tools. Managing these influences and integrating them into a blended program requires planning, training, and understanding from all members of the training delivery team.