Formats of Online Learning

Common Online Learning Formats

Online learning can happen in many different ways. You may choose to use online tools such as VIULearn to provide access to resources, communicate with your students or enable them to submit work for evaluation.  You may also choose to conduct discussions and have collaborative activities while online - freeing up class time for more active learning.  It is also possible to design fully online learning experiences for learners who live in a variety of geographical locations.

It's helpful to see the range of possibilities when we are talking about online learning.

The Online Learning Consortium has proposed seven different definitions of common course delivery formats.

Learn more about: Online Learning

Blended Learning

Blended courses integrate face-to-face and online learning. Online and classroom activities and course materials are selected to complement each other, to engage students and to achieve specified learning outcomes. Blended courses do not follow a single formula. Some use the online environment for content or lecture delivery and the classroom for active learning opportunities (sometimes known as the flipped classroom), whereas others use the face-to-face time for lectures and the online environment for discussions, assessments or other learning activities. Some use a combination of these two approaches.

Seminars + Webinars

Live seminars are events that are held live, in person, at a specific venue. Live streaming is like attending a live seminar, but instead of being there physically in person, you are watching and participating via your computer. Live webinars are similar to live streaming, except there is no live event with attendees. Recorded webinars offer the most flexibility for learning. These webinars have been pre-recorded at a previous time, and have been edited for optimal viewing

Learn more about: Seminars + Webinars

Asynchronous & Synchronous E-Learning

A study of asynchronous and synchronous e-learning methods discovered that each supports different purposes.

Further Reading:

If you are just getting started with online learning see the Introduction to VIULearn page which provides an introduction to our campus learning management system, VIULearn.

For more advanced applications of online learning please see the Creating Audio + VideoCreating Blogs, ePortfolios + Websites or the VIUOnline Rooms + Virtual Meeting Spaces pages for ideas.