Examining your course from different perspectives


One strategy for analysing and developing your course in terms of blended and flexible learning is to consider it from a number of different perspectives, each time using a series of questions and activities to focus on key aspects of the course design and how these relate to the BFL principles.

Keppell's (2009) framework for considering BFL shows the complex interrelationship of course strategy and planning which needs to account for pedagogy, interactions, learning spaces, ICTs and the development of multiliteracies. It's these five 'perspectives' that we suggest are a useful starting point from which to examine your course design, and consider ways in which it might be further enhanced.

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Of course, there are a multitude of other frameworks and models from which you can examine your course. Here are a couple that you might also want to explore before embarking on this task:
  • Garrison and Vaughn (2008) in their book, Blended learning in higher education, outline a Community of Inquiry (CoI) framework which conceptualises blended learning experiences as being made up of three interrelated elements - social presence, cognitive presence and teaching presence. They see the CoI as 'a unifying process that integrates the essential processes of personal reflection and collaboration in order to construct meaning, confirm understanding, and achieve higher-order learning outcomes' (p.29). Their book also includes a number of useful scenarios (e.g. small class courses, large enrolment classes, project-based courses), as well as a chapter on strategies and tools.

  • Conole and Oliver (2007) in their book, Contemporary perspectives on e-learning research, discuss an e-learning framework that has three aspects - thinking and reflection, experience and activity, and conversation and interaction.

If you're unsure where to start, consider using the 5 perspectives outlined in this site first. Then, as you progress, note what works and what doesn't work for you, check out these (and perhaps other) frameworks for what they have to offer, and gradually you'll come to your own lived model that works for you and your course.