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Analysis of a forced blended-learning program in social sciences higher education during the COVID-19 post-pandemic

Cosme Jesús Gómez (Faculty of Education, University of Murcia, Murcia, Spain)
Francisco Javier Hinojo-Lucena (Department of Didactics and School Organization, Universidad de Granada, Granada, Spain)
Juan Ramón Moreno-Vera (Faculty of Education, University of Murcia, Murcia, Spain)
Santiago Alonso-Garcia (Department of Didactics and School Organization, Universidad de Granada, Granada, Spain)

Education + Training

ISSN: 0040-0912

Article publication date: 5 September 2022

Issue publication date: 27 February 2023

299

Abstract

Purpose

The main goal of this investigation is to analyze the implementation of a forced blended-learning program in social sciences higher education in a post-pandemic COVID-19 context. To reach that target, the authors suggest two specific objectives (S.O.): S.O.1 To analyze the motivation, the resources and the learning effectiveness of the program. S.O.2 To establish the differences emerged between the participants.

Design/methodology/approach

The blended-learning program selected was based on the flipped-classroom model (Krasulia, 2017). The implementation consisted of a 20-min flipped classroom to flexibly follow the theoretical contents through self-elaborated videos uploaded on YouTube and adapted to all kinds of devices, two online theoretical hours driven by the teacher on the Zoom application per week with the whole group to augment explanations and solve doubts and two hours of face-to-face interaction to work cooperatively in small groups of 4–5 students per week. During these practical lessons, the students completed exercises, research reports, oral presentations and a gamification quiz developed each week through the Socrative application to keep the students engaged.

Findings

All the participants agree in very positively valuating the small-group seminars and the teacher's role in the process. This is surely caused because of the pandemic fatigue and the restrictions (Mali and Lim, 2021) that were running during the fall semester of year 2020/2021 when in Spain lived the in-between of the second and third wave of SARS-CoV2. So, as educators and investigators, the authors encourage teachers to incorporate face-to-face interaction elements in forced blended-learning programs, to include seminars in small groups to work cooperatively and to provide the students support and a quick resolution of doubts.

Originality/value

This study provides a significant value in support of a number of studies cited in the study. The study highlights the need for a standardised application of active methods in a standardised way.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

This research is the result of the following projects: “La enseñanza y el aprendizaje de competencias históricas en bachillerato: un reto para lograr una ciudadanía crítica y democrática” (PID2020-113453RB-I00) funded by the Ministry of Science and Innovation. State Research Agency; “HistoryLab for European Civic Engagement” (2020-1-ES01-KA226-HE-095430) funded by the ERASMUS+KA226; “Competencias docentes y métodos activos de aprendizaje. Una investigación evaluativa con el profesorado en formación de ciencias sociales” (20638/JLI/18) funded by Seneca Foundation and “Blended learning en la enseñanza de las Ciencias Sociales” (R-1292/2020) funded by the University of Murcia.

Citation

Gómez, C.J., Hinojo-Lucena, F.J., Moreno-Vera, J.R. and Alonso-Garcia, S. (2023), "Analysis of a forced blended-learning program in social sciences higher education during the COVID-19 post-pandemic", Education + Training, Vol. 65 No. 2, pp. 298-311. https://doi.org/10.1108/ET-06-2022-0246

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2022, Emerald Publishing Limited

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