By David J. Rosen

Are you exploring blended learning (integrating online learning with face-to-face instruction)? Perhaps you have been doing this for some time, but are looking for ways to improve what you are doing, or for new and better tools. Perhaps you are curious to learn what other adult basic education (including English language learning) practitioners are doing with blended learning, or you are looking for an exciting way to engage teachers and students in online learning inside or outside the classroom.

My colleague, Carmine Stewart, and I have written a downloadable guide, Blended Learning for the Adult Education Classroom, published by Essential Education as a free service to the adult basic education field.

The content is broken into ten sections plus an appendix:

Blended Learning Logo

  1. What is Blended Learning, and How Could it Help Adult Learners, Adult Literacy Educators, Programs and Schools?
  2. What Does Blended Learning in Adult Basic Education Look Like?
  3. How to Use Blended Learning with Your Students
  4. Deciding On and Implementing an Online Learning Platform that Fits Your Needs
  5. Teaching Tools for Students Using Blended Learning
  6. Blended Learning and Formative Assessment
  7. Online Learning Portfolios for Blended Learning Assessment and Recognition of Progress
  8. Blended Learning and Flipped Learning
  9. Blended Learning Combined with Mastery and Competency-Based Learning
  10. A Vision of Blended Learning in the Future

The Guide includes:

  • A clear description of what blended learning is and how it can help adult learners and adult basic education programs (Section One)
  • Web skills that students need for blended learning (Section One)

Needed Skills for Online Learning

  • Over a dozen descriptions of how teachers and adult literacy tutors use blended learning in adult basic education, higher education and in an alternative high school program, and what online tools they are using (Section Two)
  • Advice and tools for introducing blended learning to students (Section Three)

Questions: Guide Screenshot

  • Clear, detailed considerations to help you decide on and implement an online platform, a Turnkey Online Presence model; or to create and select your own content and create your own online presence with free or inexpensive online tools, a Build-it-Yourself Online Presence model, and a checklist for reviewing online platforms (Section Four)
  • For those who choose the “Build it Yourself” option, how to find high-quality free content (Section Four)
  • Surveys for learning how students access the Internet outside class (Section Four
  • Blended learning teaching tools (Section Five)
  • Online learning portfolios (ePortfolios) and micro-credentials (digital badges) (Sections Six and Seven)
  • Flipped learning as part of blended learning (Section Eight)
  • Competency-based/mastery learning as part of blended learning (Section Nine) and 
  • An eight-page appendix of links to blended learning tools and content.

We hope to update the guide annually, and would love to hear from adult basic education teachers, tutors, and program managers who are using blended learning in ways not described in the Guide. It would also be helpful to hear your comments about what is useful and why, what you wish we had included, and other suggestions for improving the guide.

Go to to download the guide and select the yellow “Download Blended Learning Guide” button.

David J. Rosen is the President of Newsome Associates in Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts. He is the editor of the COABE journal Web Scan column, a long-time active contributor to the LINCS Technology and Learning community of practice, and the author of the Adult Literacy Education blog He can be reached at

Share This