Applications for the winter 2016 cohort of Teaching in a Blended Learning Environment (T-BLE) are now open. T-BLE is a short, immersive blended course for instructors who are teaching in the classroom and are considering moving to a blended environment. It provides them with the opportunity to redesign a module of their course into a blended format.
The course, which began in 2014 and is now in its fifth iteration, introduces instructors to blended learning and ways to practically implement it. Amber Shaw, a lecturer in the Academic English Program at Vantage College, participated in T-BLE during summer 2015. She says the course introduced her to a variety of new resources and technologies.
“It pushed me to try out new things that I probably would not have even known about,” she said. “It made me step back and look at my curriculum, piece by piece.”
Shaw redesigned LLED 200, an academic writing course. She wanted to introduce new ways of teaching that would make her students excited about writing. Through T-BLE, she created an introductory video using Lightboard, a glass panel that instructors can use like a chalkboard that projects the mirror image of the writing to students. Shaw also created videos about learning outcomes, which students reacted positively to.
T-BLE is structured to give participants an authentic experience in a blended learning environment. The course has online modules as well as face-to-face meetings.
Shaw noted that it was helpful to have a structured approach to course revisions and a space that encouraged participants to be open minded, try different teaching approaches, and learn from peers.
“There are so many resources here, and we’re all in our own little buildings,” Shaw said, noting that T-BLE was a unique chance to collaborate with colleagues across UBC. “It’s such a huge campus, and [the course was] an opportunity that I probably wouldn’t get anywhere else. It was really neat to see the same principles [from the course] go out to amazingly different classes.”
The next T-BLE course will begin on January 21, 2016. The six-week course will be led by Joseph Anthony, a sessional instructor in the UBC Department of Physical Therapy, and will provide participants with resources, assignments, and extensive feedback from instructors and peers. For more information, contact kele fleming, associate director, Teaching & Learning Professional Development at the Centre for Teaching, Learning and Technology, at firstname.lastname@example.org.