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Examining the Future of Public Higher Education: The Pros and Cons of Online, Hybrid, and Face-to-Face Class Formats

In a recent report written by the University of Washington’s Office of the Provost, President Michael Young expressed his vision for the University to become “Tomorrow’s University Today”, not only by adapting and responding to an ever-present change in education, but also by leading the change to explore new and exciting methods of teaching and learning that have yet to be discovered. This “change” has come in the form of online and hybrid class formats that have been adopted and utilized in an effort to provide a more digital, convenient, and innovative alternative for students to pursue their education at the University of Washington.

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Learning to Go Hybrid

The Hybrid Course Development Institute (HCDI) at the University of Washington Bothell is in full swing as ten faculty members from S&T, CUSP, IAS, Business, CSS and Nursing work on developing a peer-reviewed course syllabus for a hybrid format class.

Hybrid learning is broadly defined as a course that blends online and face-to-face delivery so that face-to-face time is reduced, with 30% to 70% delivered online. So, for instance, a course that traditionally meets twice a week face-to-face would instead meet once a week face-to-face, with the rest of the course online or out of class.

The HCDI is 10 weeks long, delivered in a hybrid format with 3 to 4 face-to-face sessions, and taught by Andreas Brockhaus, David Goldstein, Rebecca Bliquez and Ian Porter. Topics covered include:

  • Benefits and challenges of hybrid learning
  • Creating effective online discussions
  • Creating online assignments
  • Using the Community of Inquiry model to determine what works best online and face-to-face
  • Assessment strategies
  • Technology tools and resources

We hope to be offering the HCDI again next year. If you’re interested in reading more about the HCDI and its effectiveness, you can read the attached conference paper written by the HCDI team and recently published by the Association for Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE Conference Proceedings paper)

UW Bothell Hybrid Course Development Institute (HCDI)

At the first annual Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Symposium on Thursday, April 28, 2011, the HCDI team (Carol Leppa, Andreas Brockhaus, Rebecca Bliquez, David Goldstein, Ian Porter) presented a poster on the Hybrid Course Development Institute that was run during fall, 2011. Eleven faculty participated and created hybrid courses that impacted 364 students. Take a look at the video and poster to see how we used a Community of Inquiry framework to create the HCDI.

View HCDI Poster (PDF File)