Hybrid learning models

Getting started with hybrid instruction

This document is part of a larger collection of documents on hybrid instruction from the Center of Teaching, Learning and Mentoring's Instructional Resources KnowledgeBase. See more hybrid instruction documents.

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Models of hybrid learning

In her article “Improving Learning and Reducing Costs: New Models for Online Learning,” Carole Twigg, director of the National Center for Academic Transformation, developed five categories for changing the way we teach to realize cost savings.  Three of these models (supplemental, replacement, and emporium) are most commonly referred to as blended models and examples of them can be found across the UW–Madison campus.

Supplemental Model

Replacement Model

Emporium Model

Levels of blending

There are many ways in which the idea of blended learning can be applied to a course — from small and quick approaches to large scale redesign processes.  In “Blended Learning Systems: Definitions, Current Trends, and Future Directions,” Graham identifies four levels of blended learning:

  • Activity-level blending: Activity-level blending occurs when a learning activity contains both face-to-face and computer-mediated elements;
  • Course-level blending: Course-level blending is a combination of distinct face-to-face and computer-mediated activities. Some blended approaches engage learners in different but supportive face-to-face and computer-mediated activities that overlap in time, while other approaches separate the time blocks so that they are sequenced chronologically but not overlapping.
  • Program-level blending: Program-level blending occurs when participants choose a mix between courses that have face-to-face courses and online courses or in which the combination between the two is prescribed by the program.
  • Institutional-level blending: Institutional-level blending occurs when there is an institutional-level commitment to blending face-to-face and computer-mediated instruction, and in which they create or endorse models at an institutional level (Graham, 2005).