• University of Leeds
  • UCL Institute of Education logo

Blended Learning Essentials: Getting Started

A free course for the Vocational Education and Training sector to promote effective practice and pedagogy in blended learning.

53,739 enrolled on this course

A graphic shows examples of blended learning and teaching with technology
  • Duration

    5 weeks
  • Weekly study

    4 hours
  • Accreditation

    AvailableMore info

If you are working in further education, skills training, vocational education, workplace learning, lifelong learning or adult education, this free online course is designed to help you understand the benefits of blended learning and how to make more effective use of technology to support your learners.

By the end of the course, you’ll be able to:

  • use a range of effective blended learning practices and pedagogies to improve your learners’ experience and attainment
  • understand how the many free and affordable technologies now available can enhance teaching and learning, and
  • approach new technologies with confidence, designing a pedagogical approach to make the best use of these tools

This course has been created with the generous funding of the Ufi Charitable Trust.

Learn with colleagues in the Vocational Education and Training sector

This online course will be supported by a group of dedicated Digital Champions. They will help you connect with teaching and training professionals who understand the practical, everyday challenges of using blended learning in your sector. This way you will have access to colleagues with the experience to answer questions, to discuss ideas and share problems.

Continue learning with part 2: Embedding Practice

This course is run in two parts. This first introductory course, Getting Started, will be followed by a second short course on Embedding Practice, which will take place in early 2016.


As a course participant you have a number of ways to gain professional recognition and accreditation for participating in the course and as a next step in your professional development including:

  • FutureLearn Statement of Participation and certified CPD hours for all participants who complete the course;
  • Accreditation via professional bodies for participants who seek wider recognition of their professional practice;
  • Paths to post-graduate qualifications for participants whom the course inspires to further study. For full information, please see the guide for participants.
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Skip to 0 minutes and 6 seconds Why is there such interest now in using learning technologies? Well, this course will explain that, whatever your role in vocational education and training. The course is about blended learning, which means using the most appropriate learning technologies alongside our usual teaching methods. We’ll be giving you practical support and advice on making the best use of technology for your learners. To help you answer questions such as, which technology should I use in my context, and does learning technology really help to improve learners’ success? I believe it gives teachers the tools that they need to develop their digital technological skills. It gives them the opportunity to be ahead of their learners and engage them more in their lessons.

Skip to 0 minutes and 50 seconds In this digital age, it’s very important that we’ve got the ability to facilitate and deliver a message across a variety of media. And by doing this course, this will help us achieve that end. The course runs online. And it’s free and open to anyone. So it’s very easy to access at any time. It’s been designed especially for professionals in the vocational education and training sector. So it covers a wide range of educational settings, and all kinds of learners with a variety of expectations and needs. The whole point of using digital technology is to improve your learners’ success. It can be motivating, so it keeps them focused. It can support their independent learning when the teacher or trainer isn’t there.

Skip to 1 minute and 35 seconds And being online, it’s very flexible. So whether you’re a complete beginner, occasional dabbler, or expert user of learning technologies, this course has something to offer you. You’ll gain knowledge and skills through videos of good practise, guided practical activities, discussion with other participants, and through trying out how it works in your own learning context. Digital technologies are improving teaching and learning for students by expanding the classroom, so that students can learn whenever, wherever they want to, basically 24/7. We’ve brought together some of the leading academics and practitioners in the vocational education and training sector. So we make sure it’s based on the real experience of making technology work.

Skip to 2 minutes and 22 seconds And we’ve built this innovative course around the key challenges currently facing teachers, tutors, and trainers in the sector. Studying the course is easy. You can do it in around three hours a week using your computer or mobile device. And what’s more, once you sign up for the course, you’ll have permanent access to the resources and activities. And then you can use them in your own local professional development, as well as for supporting your learners. Please join us and discover the essentials of what it takes to make the best use of blended learning.

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 join a global classroom of learners. If the course hasn’t started yet you’ll see the future date listed below.

  • Available now

Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

Who is the course for?

The course is free to attend and open to all. It is particularly aimed at anyone working in the Vocational Education and Training sector. Whether you are directly supporting learners or delivering training, this course will help you use blended learning more effectively.

Time commitment

The course is designed to be completed in around 4 hours per week. 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 the course at any time as the resources are always available.

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

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.

Endorsers and supporters

funded by

Ufi logo

Learning on FutureLearn

Your learning, your rules

  • Courses are split into weeks, activities, and steps to help you keep track of your learning
  • Learn through a mix of bite-sized videos, long- and short-form articles, audio, and practical activities
  • Stay motivated by using the Progress page to keep track of your step completion and assessment scores

Join a global classroom

  • Experience the power of social learning, and get inspired by an international network of learners
  • Share ideas with your peers and course educators on every step of the course
  • Join the conversation by reading, @ing, liking, bookmarking, and replying to comments from others

Map your progress

  • As you work through the course, use notifications and the Progress page to guide your learning
  • Whenever you’re ready, mark each step as complete, you’re in control

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