Resources for Online and Hybrid Teaching
The online environment has become much easier for most people to access as high-speed internet and mobile devices are now common. This new space has created an opportunity for teaching and learning to occur outside the classroom as well as inside it.
The field of internet-enabled education is huge, but below we present an introduction, and encourage you to read further and ask us questions.
It’s possible to get lost in a wilderness of terms like blended, hybrid, flipped and technology-enhanced. We will keep things simple here. The UC Irvine Academic Senate Subcommittee on Courses (SCOC) formally recognizes three types of courses:
Beyond this straightforward separation are variants.
- A flipped course is a hybrid variant that generally keeps all its scheduled meeting times, but replaces content delivery with active learning during those meeting times.
- A technology-enhanced course maintains most of a traditional course design, but has some required online components — perhaps regular online quizzes, or weekly writing journal submissions, or required online discussions.
Why use online tools?
Adding online components to a course doesn’t make it inherently more effective. Generally online components are added to solve a particular problem. Examples of effective, evidence-based uses include:
- online quizzes to increase opportunities for students to practice recalling information they have learned.
- supplemental resources for students who might need help re-learning content from introductory courses
- an online course to reach non-traditional students who find it difficult to come to campus (working adults, active military, students with caregiving responsibilities).
- activities that use online tools commonly associated with your discipline (GIS tools, statistical programs, etc.)
Online components can also solve more practical issues:
- free up classroom space when enrollment increases
- increase equivalence in content when class sections are taught by different part-time instructors
- provide content delivery in case of student illness
But moving content online just because the option is available and without careful thought can lead to problems with course effectiveness like bloating of content, or increased absenteeism, or reduction in instructor interaction with students.
Want to learn more about online tools and instruction?
At this point, your options diverge. If you are merely looking to better understand online learning, we will list some good additional readings at the end of this article. If you are ready to begin work on an online course and want a 1-hour consult to help you plan out your steps, contact Megan Linos, the Director of the UCI Center for Instructional Design, email@example.com.