Blended Learning Tools & Initiatives.

So what does Blended Learning mean anyway?

Blended Learning can be defined as a student-centered approach that entails purposeful, appropriate, and sustainable integration of technology* which optimizes the use of face-to-face and online environments. Blended learning requires a measure of synchronous interactions between instructor and learners and offers some degree of learner control over time, place, path, or pace.

Due to the lack of clarity and agreement about its theoretical foundations, the term “blended learning” is sometimes used interchangeably with other terms such as hybrid learning, flipped classroom, and technology-enhanced learning. There are, however, important differences among these terms. Hybrid learning, for instance, is normally reserved for a course design model, in which some face-to-face instruction is supplemented with online work outside of class. Similarly, flipped classroom refers to the model of instruction in which language learners engage with the new content (usually in the form of a multimedia presentation) outside of class, whereas the class time is reserved for activities that help learners practice and reinforce their language skills. Technology-enhanced learning (also known as web-enhanced or technology-based learning) implies the use of technology to enhance or facilitate students’ learning by making it more flexible and accessible (e.g., through posting materials and resources online or engaging students in online discussions).

In contrast, blended learning aims at leveraging technology to create transformative language learning experiences and changes in pedagogy**. It is the power to realize transformative learning experiences that adds value to the blended learning approach and distinguishes it from other models of instruction.

Blended Learning Initiatives

The Tech Center is engaged in the exploration of blended learning as a means to enhance language acquisition processes. Several Tech Center activities support this exploration, including a series of events informed by design thinking as well as activities geared toward field implementations of blended learning. The latter type of activity includes: 1) the creation of Blended Learning Pilots to test the effectiveness and feasibility of blended learning solutions to instructional challenges; 2) the creation of Blended Learning Mentoring Program to enhance the capacity of the Language Flagship faculty to design and implement blended learning experiences; 3) the collaboration with the Arabic Language Flagship program at the University of Arizona to develop and pilot a shareable online course focusing on the Moroccan dialect.

 

  • * Gruba, P., Cárdenas-Claros, M. S., Suvorov, R., & Rick, K. (2016). Blended language program evaluation. London, UK: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • * Gruba, P., & Hinkelman, D. (2012). Blending technologies in second language classrooms. Basingstoke, UK: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • ** Bonk, C. J., & Graham, C. R. (2006). Handbook of blended learning: Global perspectives, local designs. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Explore our Blended Learning projects

Blended Learning Pilots

Blended Learning Pilots

Once a year, the Tech Center invite Flagship programs and instructors to submit a plan to test the effectiveness and feasibility of a blended learning tool. Most of the technologies that are piloted in this program are discovered through the LaunchPad event.

Blended Learning Essentials

Blended Learning Essentials

A collection of lessons meant as a primer for world language instructors interested in this topic. This series was designed by Tech Center faculty in collaboration with World Language professionals who have national recognition and who are experienced in the design or implementation of blended learning in the context of World Language education.

Innovation Webcasts

Innovation Webcasts

Ideas for the implementation of technologies in language teaching and learning, with a special focus on sharing what works in Language Flagship programs. Browse this collection to garner ideas from Language Flagship faculty, language center personnel, private-sector entrepreneurs, and other partners in the Language Flagship’s community of practice.

Tech Center Toolkit

Tools for Blended Learning

The Tech Center TOOLKIT  is a collection of technology tools being used by Flagship students and instructors. The tools in this collection were identified through a survey of Language Flagship Programs or else submitted for recommendation directly by Flagship students or instructors.

green ideas chinese

Green Ideas - Chinese

In the context of an international corporation, Green Ideas, Inc., language learning is personalized to target learners professional interests and needs. This project models how existing resources can be leveraged to create blended learning experiences across institutions for students in the Language Flagship Program.

green ideas korean

Green Ideas - Korean

In the context of an international corporation, Green Ideas, Inc., language learning is personalized to target learners professional interests and needs. This project models how existing resources can be leveraged to create blended learning experiences across institutions for students in the Language Flagship Program.

Ignite Green Ideas

Ignite Green Ideas

A public event that wraps up a semester of work on public speaking and Korean language for professionals. This event is embedded within the Green Ideas simulation for Korean Language for Professionals. After a simulated job application process, simulation participants complete onboarding training required to all company employees.

russian for professionals

Russian for Professionals

Russian Language for Professionals comprises several blended learning experiences designed by the Tech Center in collaboration with Language Flagship programs. These experiences leverage technology in innovative ways to create simulated language learning contexts that require professional language use.

Contact Information

TECH CENTER

1890 East West Road

Moore Hall 256

Honolulu, HI 96822

(808) 956-5121

tech.center@hawaii.edu

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