On the previous topic of online collaborative learning approach, it becomes apparent that to improve the broader perspective and learning of a problem, it is necessary to have both digital tools and competence from various disciplines. However, in order to support these prerequisites, it is necessary to have a platform that consists of leaning theories such as cognitivism , constructivism, etc., threshold concepts by the logistics of digital tools. Since, there are weakness in the adopting/adapting a complete course through online such as MOOC, there is a need for a hybrid approach that supports both physical lectures and digital lectures. This necessary lead to the invention of blended learning approach.

“Blended learning (BL) integrates seemingly opposite approaches, such as formal and informal learning, face-to-face and online experiences, directed paths and reliance on self-direction, and digital references and collegial connections, in order to achieve individual and organizational goals”


In the simplest terms, blended learning utilizes both physical space and digital space. In traditional learning approach where students learn concepts and theories only in the class, blended learning facilitates students with supportive material by scaffolding to handle threshold concepts of students and gave better understanding of the concepts prior to the lecture by the support of digital space. In the physical space, the teachers and students have sufficient time for discussions and applications of theories that can foster students with higher level of bloom’s, psychometric and affective taxonomies. One of the prerequisites of the course, though not mandatory, to get acquainted with the digital literacy.

To discuss on designing the blended learning in the education and provide a convincing argument to the institutional space, our group at Open networked learning come up with an interesting illustration at Genially. Due to this hybrid approach of blended learning, though it has some drawbacks, it can bring several opportunities (from references and discussion) for students, teachers and institutions alike.

For Students

  • Customized learning: Learning based on your threshold concepts
  • Flexibility: Learn at your own pace, timing and effort. Inclusive too
  • Creativity: Increase usage of tools, methods and models foster creativity
  • Accessibility: Get access to wide variety of material
  • Constructive feedback: By immediate and constant feedback, more scope for learning
  • Collaborative: Gain knowledge and learn from peers by working collaboratively

In addition to above, students will get higher expectations by utilizing the technology, possibility to develop independent learning skills, improve their quality of learning, and ability to achieve better to reach the intended learning outcomes of the course.

For Teachers

  • Pedagogical principles: Possibility to adapt and adopt various pedagogical theories and principles
  • Flexibility: Availability of various tools, methods and learning theories
  • Creativity: Increase usage of tools, methods and models foster creativity
  • Time management: More time to discuss, reflect, learn and assessment
  • Effective feedback: Capability to implement various of feedback methods and better evaluation
  • Collaborative: Gain knowledge and learn from peers by working collaboratively using co-production

in addition to above, teachers will get confidence on themselves to reach the expectations of students from achieving intended learning outcomes, sense of building the course material and re-utilizing for other purposes, and possibility to reach wider audience at the same time.

For Institutions

  • Saves cost: Save lot of building learning management system and reuse for lifelong
  • Accessibility: Access to diverse, geographical, language and inclusive
  • Reputation: Increase institutional stature by adapting blended learning
  • Time management: Build once and reuse for several iterations
  • Effective feedback: Improved tracking and reporting
  • Classroom utilization: Less usage of learning class and effective usage of classroom for discussion and learning

In addition to above, institutions can benefit from offering of several types of courses to reach wider audience, less issues in administration, and improve the quality of education.


Howard, T., Cornuel, E. and Fleck, J., 2012. Blended learning and learning communities: opportunities and challenges. Journal of Management Development.

Al-Samarraie, H. and Saeed, N., 2018. A systematic review of cloud computing tools for collaborative learning: Opportunities and challenges to the blended-learning environment. Computers & Education, 124, pp.77-91.

Boelens, R., De Wever, B. and Voet, M., 2017. Four key challenges to the design of blended learning: A systematic literature review. Educational Research Review, 22, pp.1-18.

Bowyer, J. and Chambers, L., 2017. Evaluating blended learning: Bringing the elements together. Research Matters: A Cambridge Assessment Publication, 23, pp.17-26.

Medina, L.C., 2018. Blended learning: Deficits and prospects in higher education. Australasian Journal of Educational Technology, 34(1).

Taplin, R.H., Kerr, R. and Brown, A.M., 2013. Who pays for blended learning? A cost–benefit analysis. The Internet and Higher Education, 18, pp.61-68.

Opportunities of Blended learning