• University of Leeds
  • IOE

Blended Learning Essentials: Embedding Practice

This is the second part of a course for the Vocational Education and Training sector to promote effective use of blended learning.

24,690 enrolled on this course

Blended Learning Essentials: Embedding Practice
This course is part of the Blended Learning Essentials program, which will enable you to explore the essentials for teachers, trainers & managers developing blended learning.

Technology has fundamentally changed how we learn, making it more engaging but also challenging. This course shows how to embed blended learning practices in the Vocational Education and Training (VET) sector. You will explore how new technology can assist learning from experience, how it helps overcome challenges in the sector, and will develop your own skills and discover the optimal uses of blended learning. With over 90% satisfaction rate on its previous runs, this course will support implementation of blended learning in your practice.

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Skip to 0 minutes and 9 seconds These are all examples of learning in action. These young people are engaged in problem solving, making decisions, being creative, learning from mistakes. This is what learning should be like, and all these examples are triggered by digital technologies. Of course, not all learning can be done with technology. Sometimes learners need to be working with teachers, with each other, practicing their manual skills, or social skills, or business skills, and sometimes, just quietly reading and thinking. That’s why using technologies is called blended learning. In this course, we will look at the optimal blend of technology-based and conventional methods. Many practitioners in the vocational education and training sector now use blended learning, but it’s not easy.

Skip to 1 minute and 3 seconds The technology keeps changing, strategies and policies change, employers want a more responsive curriculum, and VET practitioners are having to learn these new digital skills whilst also carrying on doing the teaching and the training. The focus all through the course is on how technology can help with meeting the challenges you face as a professional. Can it offer more flexibility? Does it encourage independent learning? Is it cost effective? Can we improve assessment and feedback? Does it increase workload? How can we use it to be more responsive to learner’s needs and employer’s demands? During the course, you’ll be watching and interacting with other professionals in the sector to find out what they do.

Skip to 1 minute and 53 seconds That’s the best way to keep pace with all the exciting opportunities the digital world can offer to educators. You can study the course in around four hours a week using your desktop computer or mobile device. So please join us, and discover what it takes for blended learning to be embedded in your everyday practice.


  • Week 1

    Learning from experience

    • Welcome

      Before you get started, take some time to meet the educators who will support you through the course. There's also an opportunity to meet your fellow learners, identify your learning goals and plan your learning journey.

    • How does technology enhance the learning process?

      In this activity we look at how technology can be used to enhance different kinds of learning, beginning with the learner's voice.

    • Collecting digital data to improve learning designs

      In this activity, we will consider how the use of data from learners can help us to design effective blended learning.

    • Contributing to a community of practice

      This is an opportunity to look at how you might use digital tools for sharing learning design ideas, and for contributing to a community of practice in blended learning design.

    • Summary

      To round off this first week, we take a look back at the main learning points as well as looking forward to next week.

  • Week 2

    What can technology do for our most challenging ambitions?

    • The week ahead

      The focus for the week is to help you propose ways in which new technology can address the key challenges facing the VET sector.

    • Reaching more learners, more flexibly

      Here we explore the extent to which technology can help the teacher give learners more and better learning support, while not increasing the teaching workload overall.

    • Developing independent learners

      Independent learning is a key life learning skill, which technology can support. Once learners begin to develop this skill, they can make use of online resources and learn without always needing support from the teacher.

    • Reducing the costs of innovation

      This activity explores some of the ways we can use technology to reduce the cost of innovation, by sharing within and between organisations.

    • Summary

      To round off this second week we take a look back at the main learning points, as well as looking forward to next week.

  • Week 3

    Planning for a challenging digital future

    • The week ahead

      This week is about embedding blended learning practice, by contributing to the VET sector’s community knowledge of how to do it well.

    • Matching your innovation to the needs of your organisation's ambitions

      To be valued, blended learning has to support your organisation's overall ambitions, and could contribute to achieving them. This activity works on considering how you can match your innovation to your organisation’s ambitions.

    • Making blended learning affordable

      Blended learning has to be affordable, so in this activity we consider the costs and benefits of investing in blended learning, from the point of view of teacher time.

    • Managing a change to a blended learning culture

      Teachers, trainers, central unit staff, senior managers and leaders, as well as the learners themselves, all play a role in moving to a blended learning culture. We hear their stories and plan for local action.

    • Summary of the week and of the course

      We close the course with an opportunity for you to ask any outstanding questions, and explore how to take your learning further.

Who is this accredited by?

The CPD Certification Service
The CPD Certification Service:

This course has been accredited by the CPD Certification Service, which means it can be used to provide evidence of your continuing professional development.

When would you like to start?

Start straight away and learn at your own pace. If the course hasn’t started yet you’ll see the future date listed below.

  • Available now

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Apply new technologies in courses and learning opportunities to improve learner outcomes.
  • Identify ways in which new technology can contribute to solve key challenges in your learning context.
  • Develop your own skills further and contribute to the VET sector’s community knowledge of the optimal uses of blended learning.

Who is the course for?

This course is open to everyone, but is particularly aimed at those working in further education, skills training, vocational education, workplace learning, and lifelong learning or adult education. We provide a range of accreditation pathways, whether you are directly supporting learners or delivering training and seek to use blended learning more effectively.

Time commitment

The course is designed to be completed in around 4 hours per week, with optional further reading in addition. All activities have recommended times, and there are plenty of resources and activities for you to explore further if you’d like to do more on a particular topic. You can join at any time during the course.

Who will you learn with?

Chair of Learning with Digital Technology, Knowledge Lab, UCL IOE.
Developing a global community of teachers around the Learning Designer

Twitter: @thinksitthrough

Dean of Digital Education and Professor of Educational Technology at the University of Leeds. For more information see: https://essl.leeds.ac.uk/education/staff/156/professor-neil-morris

Promoted by

promoted by

Association for Learning Technology

Who developed the course?

University of Leeds

As one of the UK’s largest research-based universities, the University of Leeds is a member of the prestigious Russell Group and a centre of excellence for teaching.

UCL Institute of Education

Founded in 1902, as a teacher training college in London, the IOE is now a world-class research and teaching institution.


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