Schools in the UK have reopened and face-to-face teaching is returning to normal. Following lessons learnt from lockdown, online learning can now work effectively in a combination with mainstream education.
During lockdown, the education sector had to adjust and provide online learning facilities for their students. Online learning, despite some drawbacks, has demonstrated its effectiveness in maintaining children’s educational standards.
A five-step process can be useful to help learners get the best results.
1. Initial Assessments
A logical approach should be taken to educate children; a good starting point is to provide an initial assessment. Previously, SATs (Standard Assessment Tests) were in place during the important transition from Year 6 to 7 but have been scrapped and replaced with automated scaled scores. Gavin Williamson, the Secretary of State for Education, said:
“[SATs] will be an additional burden on schools and it’s important we are very much focused on welcoming children back to the classroom at the earliest opportunity.”
Initial assessments for learners are vital as they allow you to identify areas for improvement. Online learning can speed up this process with less time spent marking and feedback can be delivered more quickly.
2. Gap Analysis
Once an initial assessment has been completed, areas for improvement can be further emphasised through gap analysis. Lockdown has caused children to fall behind in their education, latest analysis published by the Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) suggests:
“The attainment gap between disadvantaged and non-disadvantaged pupils has grown by up to 25 per cent over the past two years.”
Online learning and mainstream education similarly analyse students’ performance and see where improvements can be made. Online learning can offer a more efficient and visible service for students to develop their knowledge; allowing a quicker approach to improved results.
3. Teaching and learning
Education had to shift to online delivery due to school closures during the peak of the pandemic. Safeguarding issues and inconsistent results were apparent, but if implemented properly with better planning, it could have had better outcomes. A poll found that:
“49 per cent of students surveyed were happy with the online learning put in place by their institution to replace face-to-face teaching.”
In addition to this, students who are reluctant about attending school due to a variety of personal reasons can benefit from online learning. They can learn at their own pace with personalised support allowing themselves and also the school as a whole to improve.
4. Continuous assessment
Continuous assessment is essential for student development as it provides numerous opportunities for learners to improve their skills. Traditional and online learning have their similarities but a study found:
“59% of students had higher grades when studying online, compared to their results when studying in a classroom environment.”
Online continuous assessments can offer a more efficient option than classroom-based assessments. These can lead to increased results in grades and performance at a quicker rate.
5. Track Impact
Once progress is evidenced, the impact learning has had on learners can be tracked and this can be easily done online. Attainment levels can be monitored and continuous assessments can lead to better results through a more direct avenue when online. A recent Pearson Global Learner Survey showed:
“that 88% of people believe that online learning will be a part of our education experiences moving forward.”
Online learning working in combination with mainstream education can promote a more personalised experience for students. It could also allow quicker educational recovery than what mainstream education alone may not deliver.
Synergy: Online Learning & Mainstream Education Working Together
Online learning has displayed its ability to educate children especially during a turbulent time through the pandemic. Schools could now take advantage of the potential that online learning holds and use it wisely to assist their students, especially those who are hesitant about mainstream education.
EDClass offers the five-step process which is proven to help students achieve their educational goals. Click the video below which explains our process of online learning to help you break down learning barriers.