Sunday, January 3, 2016

What does quality mean in a Blended Learning Course?

Quality is defined by the ISO organization and can be seen as “… the totality of features and characteristics of a product or service that bears its ability to satisfy stated or implied needs”. The transfer from production to teaching and learning is not so easy because you have to define the product or service.
Therefore, in teaching quality can be seen from different points of view. I want to explain what product and service can mean in teaching and learning.

Onsite teaching as a part of Blended Learning
First, there is the teaching organization. They offer a kind of product or service called course or teaching. The quality of this product depends on the teaching organization itself. That means the quality of organization, the planning and executing of the course, the quality of the materials as well as the quality of the teachers.
Distance Learning phase of the Blended Learning course
A second possibility is to focus on the learner, and here on the needs of the learner. Quality describes how the needs of the learner are satisfied, to which level the learner is supported in his/hers learning and also the learning success.
Another position is the aim of learning, for example to get e certain degree or qualification. Here the learner must proof a certain level of quality in learning, in his motivation and in the maturity to manage the course.

All these consideration makes it difficult to simply define quality in teaching or learning. It’s always necessary to explain in which context quality is meant. Well defined quality frameworks in Blended Learning take these different items in account and offer an encompassing system covering all issues mentioned above.