Success of Blended Learning Depends on Innovation

As blended learning becomes increasingly prevalent nationwide, a new study on its impacts on classroom learning techniques comes with a caveat: educational technology is ineffective without ways of analyzing its results.

Released this week by Arlington, Va.-based think tank The Lexington Institute, the study, “Why Blended Learning Can’t Stand Still: A Commitment to Constant Innovation Is Needed to Realize the Potential of Individualized Learning,” examines ways blended learning is affecting K-12 education, for better or worse.

A 2012 study from the Innosight Institute found that the United States has spent at least $60 billion on educational technology, or “edtech,” in the past two decades with no discernible gains in student outcomes—not a slight number given the economic conditions of the past several years.

While Ed-tech detractors have claimed schools are motivated by “blind faith” in utilizing technology and overemphasizing digital skills at the expense of traditional reading, math, and writing fundamentals, the Lexington Insutute’s report counters that many schools have embraced the term “blended learning” without grasping its true significance.

“Schools that use technology to deliver content, collect data, or improve technical literacy are not engaged in blended learning when they are simply marrying technology to traditional methods,” the report says. <Read more.>

Via Rob Bock, Education Week.