K-12 Distance Learning and Blended Learning: Trends on the Rise?

stance Learning and Blended Learning: Trends on the Rise?

Rotational… Flex… Self-blended… Enriched-virtual… What are these terms describing? Apps? Cars? New types of virtual gaming? Actually, these terms describe a nascent form of learning referred to as blended learning or hybrid learning. Indeed, a 2011 report by the International Association for K-12 Online Learning (iNACOL) indicates that blended learning is on the rise and being used more than online learning in some countries around the world. In other words, it may be growing.


But wait… aren’t blended learning and online learning the same? According to iNACOL, that may not be the case. In fact, the association describes blended learning as a mode that supports in-class activities for students in an actual classroom whereas online learning occurs entirely outside of the classroom and entails no physical student presence at all.

To more fully envision blended learning, imagine a continuum that puts brick-and-mortar schools at one end and fully-online programs at the other. Blended learning can fall anywhere in between depending on the mix of campus-based and online learning that is used. This can lead to many different implementations. Take a look at our infographic below to learn more about blended learning and how it’s being used in some K12 classrooms.


Online and Blended Learning: A Survey of Policy and Practice of K-12 Schools Around the World, International Association for K-12 Online Learning, November 2011 [PDF]

For a list of complete sources, please view the infographic.