Blended Learning: The New Norm
By: Christopher Dennis E. Catapang
A new era of teaching and learning is redefining the delivery of instruction at LPU-Laguna. Teachers and students have harnessed the power of digital technology by using Blackboard Open LMS, an online learning management system platform of the school. With more than half of the teacher population using Blackboard to deliver content and perform assessments, blended learning has now become the new norm.
Blended learning is an approach to education that combines face-to-face and online learning. Recent studies prove that blended learning is more superior to traditional methods in delivering specific course outcomes. This is why LPU-Laguna has fully embraced digital education by educating, simplifying and monitoring the use of LMS not to replace, but to enhance the current status of classroom instruction.
Reception in the academic community is mixed. Jake of CBA views LMS as the most logical way to reach out to Gen Z, who are admittedly locked to their devices all day. Furthermore, Blackboard allows access to course content online 24/7. Electronic submission of homeworks and projects means material savings as compared to paper submissions. Another student named Ruth thought that Moodle is great, but connectivity can still be improved in some areas.
Positive effects of LMS are likewise felt by faculty users. Mr. Isaac Morillo of COECS expressed how LMS affected him.
“LMS is a way of life in my teaching profession, as I can’t deliver instruction successfully without this platform.
It helps me a lot in course delivery, classroom management, student learning assessments and skills building.
It also serves as a good medium of communication and exchange of information to students”, Morillo said.
Mr. Ferdinand Fernandez of CBA shared how LMS improves his efficiency in connecting with his Marketing students, “LMS is a good vehicle of reaching out to my students as a group. I was able to provide them the slides and assignments with ease. Likewise, it commands discipline from the students to access the LMS portal, since; it is accessible to all my students. Soon, it will be my vehicle for my quizzes.“
Coming in with highest number of content and activities uploaded online is a seasoned faculty from CAS, Dr. Merlita Medallon. She recounts how blended learning is very useful to achieving learning objectives in mathematics, “I had a paradigm shift in the way of teaching. LMS allows me to shift from traditional lecture type to a more student centered approach. Blackboard is a great help for me especially this school year that new GE courses in Math were implemented. With the bulk of lessons attached to the course, LMS allows me to extend teaching and learning outside of class hours.”
So far, a number of faculty members were given citation as top users who have espoused the use of LMS to their regular teaching and learning routine.They are Mr. Isaac Morallo of COECS, Mark Kevin Sayas of CAM, John Carlo Palacol of CITHM, Ferdinand Felix Fernandez of CBA and Dr. Merlita Medallon of CAS.