Hygiene Sue - News Board

Posted by Sue Richardson  15/08/2018
blended learning.jpg

To Blend or not to Blend - the different ways of learning

At Hygiene Sue we cover all types of learning, Online, classroom or even Blended – or using its far less popular name multi model learning. Here we look into the advantages and disadvantages and what works best for you:


Classroom Based learning


In todays fast paced, digital age, there has been an influx of online coursework made available at secondary, 6th 

Form and university level. While these courses may offer a level of convenience, they can also be considered by some to be problematic, because they lack some of the distinctive advantages that classroom learning has to offer. Whether it is through classroom-based discussions or scientific experiments, physical classrooms are able to offer more methods of interaction than online classrooms can provide. With more ways to interact with new subject matter, students may have a deeper understanding of the curriculum with longer-lasting retention of the material. Plus, there is a social component to classroom learning that can be compromised with other teaching methods.


While many online courses require that students take tests and write essays, there can be a dramatic reduction in the level of student assessment that can take place. When teachers are not able to see how students work on a daily basis, they will not be able to gauge as accurately whether a student fully understands the material. Teachers in the classroom might be able to offer extra assistance or utilize a different approach to teaching a given subject, while teachers managing online courses may not have the same opportunities.


It used to be that many employers and higher education institutions preferred to have candidates with amore traditional academic coursework, over those who have an extensive background of online classes. However, with the rise in popularity of blended and online courses and with more people recognising degrees from institutions such as Open University it is now negligible whether a classroom based learning programme offers better possibilities.

Online based learning


The main advantage of distance (online) learning is that it allows you to fit your learning around your work and home life.  Aside from being able to set your own pace of studying, it is your decision as to when and where you study. If you live abroad, you can still gain a qualification online, meaning you can have the qualification before you travel or move.

An online course does assist in transferable skills such as research, time management and planning.  Plus there is the added benefit that an online course often costs less than a full-time degree.

The downside is that you will not enjoy the conviviality of being in a classroom and rubbing shoulders with fellow students on a daily basis. The exchange of ideas and ‘brain storming’ can be highly beneficial in the learning process.  Many online learning providers usually offer dedicated support to their online or distance learning students.

You can study undergraduate, postgraduate and professional level courses, such as the ones at Hygiene Sue via online learning.

Blended learning


Blended learning has been reported as being more effective than purely online classes. Some studies have shown blended learning methods also result in high levels of student achievement and are more effective than face-to-face learning. With Blended learning, students can work on their own which frees teachers up to support individual students who may need more attention.

The use of information and communication technologies have been found to improve student attitudes towards learning. By incorporating information technology into class projects, communication between lecturers and part-time students has improved, and students were able to better evaluate their understanding of course material via the use of "computer-based assessment modules".

Blended learning can lower costs by putting classrooms in the online space and it essentially replaces pricey textbooks with electronic devices that students often bring themselves to class. E-textbooks, which can be accessed digitally, may also help to drive down textbook budgets.

Blended learning often includes software that automatically collects student data and measures academic progress, providing teachers, students and parent’s detailed students data. Often, in the case of Hygiene Sue, tests are automatically scored, providing instantaneous feedback. Student logins and work times are also measured to ensure accountability. In this day and age of so many choices but so few resources, students with special talents or interests outside of the available curricula use blended learning to advance their skills or exceed grade restrictions. Blended learning allows students to work at their own pace, making sure they fully understand new concepts before moving on.


One of the main disadvantages to blended learning, as with Online learning is the reliance of up to date equipment and software. The tools need to be reliable, easy to use, and up to date, for them to have a meaningful impact on the learning experience.


Whatever route a student chooses to take, there is, at least, a choice making it so much more easier to learn and attain skills in the 21st century than ever before. However, you learn, however you retain information there is, at least, a course for you.

 If you are interested in learning more about apprenticeships and the ways you can learn call Sue Richardson 01892 524957 or email  theteam@hygienesue.co.uk