Course Title and Description
The course that is proposed to be included in the new learning program is Clinical Laboratory Science 104. The new program will be suitable for this course as it does not involve a lot of practical works. The course will be taught at junior level.
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The level comprises the fresh men, who mainly include the first and second year students. The fresh men do not have a lot of face-to-face contact with their lecturers and instructors.
The curricular area under which the selected course falls is health and wellbeing. In health and wellbeing, students are taught and trained on how take care of their health and that of other people.
The courses that fall under this curricular area require many hours of learning and if the traditional face-to-face is applied, a number of topics remain uncovered.
The institution selected for this project is Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences (ACPHS). ACPHS is a privately owned postsecondary learning institution known mostly for pharmacy and laboratory sciences. The college was started in 1881 and has been in operation for more than 30 years now.
It is situated in New York City and has a population of about 1,100 students. More than a half of the total students reside outside and it is difficult for them to commute to the college every day. There are more female than male students in the college. The courses offered at ACPHS last for 4 years.
The groups of students targeted with the proposed project are the first and second year students of Clinical Laboratory Science (Grove, 2013).
Course Type and Rationale
This proposed mode of delivery for the selected course is the hybrid type. In case of Clinical Laboratory Science, the hybrid mode of teaching has more benefits than the online system.
In the hybrid mode, the students are likely to have greater opportunities to interact and discuss contentious issues with lecturers and fellow students as they will be meeting in classrooms and online.
Secondly, the students will have a chance to choose between face-to-face and online modes of teaching for discussing their coursework.
However, they will not have 24/7 access to internet course materials as would be the case if the course was exclusively taught online. The students in the hybrid mode will spend some of their time in class with their instructors and fellow students (Wang, Fong, & Kwan, 2010).
The hybrid mode is also better than the traditional face-to-face system that is currently used to teach the selected course.
Firstly, the students will have greater freedom, time flexibility and convenience since the time they waste when commuting to classrooms will be reduced.
Secondly, the students will have unlimited access to up-to-date course materials and other resources found in the internet. However, owing to the hybrid mode, the student-instructor physical interaction will be greatly reduced. The weak students are likely to suffer a lot due to this mode of teaching (Wang, Fong, & Kwan, 2010).
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The hybrid mode supports not only the curriculum, but also the target group and the college at large. The hybrid mode will assist the program to reduce the number of students who remain in the school to engage in full-time studies.
In fact, only the senior students-third and fourth year students will be required to remain in the school. The target group, the first and second year students of Clinical Laboratory Science, will be saved the agony of having to commute to the college daily.
The college will also save the resources that it could have used to put up accommodation facilities for the target group (Wang, Fong, & Kwan, 2010).
Course Design Model
The proposed design for the selected course will be the content and support model. The model will consist of the course content, which will be delivered in a course package via the Web, and tutorial assistance, which will be delivered during class meetings.
This model encourages teachers to express the content of the course materials in different ways from the authors so that students can easily understand them. The computer conferencing within the model helps in assessing other aspects such as peer commenting and online content (Mason, 2001).
The proposed model is flexible as it allows teachers to add more content whenever they deem it necessary. The additional materials that teachers may incorporate into the model should reflect the interests of the students; otherwise, there will be conflicts among students when it comes to the time for participating in the online activities and participating in class discussions.
The teachers will be required to avoid structured Web pages as these are known to reduce the engagement realized in the discussions and the content that is mastered by the students (Caulfield, 2011).
The proposed course design model is suitable for the potential learners, the delivery mode and the content area. The model allocates sufficient time to both online and classroom activities.
The target group will have enough time to collect the course materials from the internet and use them in class discussions and interactions with the instructors and fellow students.
The model directly supports the hybrid mode, which is the proposed form of delivery for the course. The model also supports the collection of course materials from the internet as well as from classroom discussions and training sessions (Mason, 2001).
Clinical Laboratory Science, which is the proposed course to be included in the hybrid mode, will see some of its contents studied online while others will remain in the traditional face-to-face classroom teaching.
Some of the content of the course comprises general biology 1 with lab, general biology 2 with lab, general psychology, physics 1 with lab, physics 2 with lab, microbiology, calculus, organic chemistry 1 with lab, organic chemistry 2 with lab, biostatics, general chemistry 1 with lab, and general chemistry 2 with lab.
Some of the components of the course will be done online, while the remaining ones will be handled in the classroom discussions.
The units that will be conducted online include general psychology, microbiology, biostatics, calculus, public speaking and humanities.
The remaining, which are mostly those that involve laboratory experiments, will be done at the college under the guidance of the instructors and tutors. The traditional face-to-face interactions in classroom will be allocated 60% of the total time of the students’ program.
The proposed design is expected to raise the level of academic performance among the first and second year students who decide to take the Clinical Laboratory Science course. The model will enable the students to search for course materials both in the internet and at the college library.
The students will still have access to their instructors and tutors who assist them in areas where they need their guidance. The model will also help the students to break the boredom that normally comes with doing things in the classroom throughout the day (Caulfield, 2011).
Instructional Strategies and Collaboration
The students will be trained collectively on the selected course by working in small groups, which will comprise guided design, role playing, and collaborative learning. The first strategy, guided deign, will promote learning through student interactions in the small groups.
The main elements in the guided design will include the development of the students’ decision making abilities and training of specific principles on the units to be taught. This strategy will enable the students to think logically and apply the knowledge they acquire to make learning-related decisions (Ndon, 2010).
The second strategy, role playing, will also be done by means of the small groups. The students in each group will be required to take up different roles in the groups. The roles will be assigned according to the abilities of each participant to ensure that each student in a particular group gets the part that he/she can handle best.
The students will be expected to interact and coordinate their learning activities both online and in their classrooms. The role is important in the hybrid mode of learning as it encourages real-time group discussions among the college students.
The strategy will assist the students to conduct informative discussions and understand the course units, especially those involving experiments (Ndon, 2010).
The last strategy, collaborative learning, will involve forming groups of two students to work together with their main aim being learning. In this strategy, the groups should consist of students with differing abilities to ensure that each student makes different contributions within a particular group.
The groups will be issued with materials developed by their instructors before they meet to discuss them in the classroom. This strategy will be beneficial to the students as it incorporates the learning materials provided by the instructors and those obtained from the internet by students (Ndon, 2010).
The success of the hybrid model proposed for the selected course will depend on the ability of the students to bond well with the surrounding community. The ability to form such a bond will be encouraged by students’ preference for the course and the design model.
It is expected that the students will enjoy the hybrid model and the course and it will motivate them to work together with the community around them. Creation of such a bond is critical to the success of the students as the course will require the students to work collaboratively (Snart, 2010).
The hybrid learning and discussion model has the potential of creating effective forums and seminars, which also encourage collaborative learning. The course model is designed in such a way that it encourages the formation of bonds among students themselves and with the community.
The proposed design that encourages community links is expected to ease the way with which the students learn the necessary course contents.
The hybrid model, with the assistance of the good relationship with the community, will provide the students with a deeper engagement with the course materials and content. Co9nsequently, the social aspects of group work should be considered for greater efficiency (Snart, 2010).
The hybrid model will transform the community around the college into an e-Learning society that is bonded together via technology and efficiency. The members of the community will no longer be required to meet physically as most of their interactions will be done online.
The transformation will see the community save time as its members improve their efficiency in everything they do. The topic area will be supported by e-Trainings and collaborations among community members and students (Snart, 2010).
Faculty Role and Professional Development
The hybrid mode will require the instructors to develop course materials according to the course problems. This will include incorporating new types of independent and interactive learning activities, which have proved tricky in the traditional face-to-face mode.
The instructors will be required to re-examine the course goals and objectives to conform to the online learning course units. The instructors will need to redesign the learning activities so that they can be more student-centered.
The instructors will prepare the students to understand the active roles they are required to play in the hybrid mode (O’Laughlin, 2007).
There are skills and characteristics that will be required in the instructors to make the hybrid mode a success. Firstly, the instructors will be required to have the ability to facilitate online course discussions and small group interactions.
Secondly, the instructors will be required to have the ability to design communications that take care of both online and traditional face-to-face modes (O’Laughlin, 2007).
To ensure that the hybrid mode is conducted appropriately, the instructors of the first and second year students taking Clinical Laboratory Sciences will be taken through a short course to prepare them for the challenge. Firstly, the instructors will be trained on how they can design online discussions for their students.
Secondly, the instructors will be trained on how they can allocate time for online interactions and classroom work. Lastly, the instructors will be trained on how to design online and classroom timetables that do not overload the instructors or the students in any way (O’Laughlin, 2007).
There are a number of ways that can be used to assess the progress of students in the proposed hybrid course. The major assessments for this course will include formative and summative approaches and the use of suggestion boxes.
The formative assessment that will be done during the course will involve the use of upgraded projects, tests, and discussions, which will be given to the students by their respective instructors.
The formative assessment will provide the students with an opportunity to evaluate their mastery levels in various topics and determine the areas in which they need to improve.
The instructors will also rely on the formative assessment to determine the strengths and weaknesses of each student in relation to a particular topic (Wormeli, 2006).
The summative assessment will be done at the end of every semester to evaluate student mastery and understanding of particular concepts and skills taught in that semester. The assessment, in most cases, will consist of end semester tests, examinations, and projects.
The teachers will be required to mark the end semester examinations and projects, and grade the students accordingly.
The results obtained in the marking process will then be used to determine the success of the proposed hybrid course. The results will also be helpful in determining areas that require adjustments (Wormeli, 2006).
The assessment of the students’ success in the hybrid course will be conducted through a number of steps. Firstly, there will be a suggestion box situated at strategic places in the college into which the students will be required to place their opinions regarding the hybrid mode.
The students’ opinions and suggestions will be used to assess the effectiveness of the mode. The evaluations of students’ opinions given in the suggestion boxes will be used together with the results of the summative and formative assessments to evaluate the success of the proposed hybrid mode.
Clinical laboratory science is the proposed course for the new learning program. The proposed course is suitable for the new program as it involves less experimental and practical work. The course will be taught through a hybrid mode, which applies both online and the traditional face-to-face systems.
The institution selected for this project is Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences (ACPHS), a privately owned institution mostly recognized for pharmacy and other health sciences.
The proposed design for the selected course is the content and support model, which will comprise the course content, delivered in a course package through the internet, and tutorial assistance, which will be delivered during class meetings.
The content of the course will be introduced in class meetings to ensure all the students understand the basic concepts of the course. The proposed design is expected to raise the level of academic performance among the first and second year students who will be the main participants of the program.
The first and second year students will be trained collectively by working together in small groups; the main strategies will include role playing, comprise guided design, and collaborative learning.
In addition to the collective training, the success of the proposed program will also require the cooperation of the neighboring community. The community will be required to support the students where necessary.
The success of the program will also depend on the commitment of the instructors. The instructors will be required to design the timetables and course materials according to the course requirements.
The success of the proposed program will be assessed through formative and summative assessments, and the use of suggestion boxes. Formative assessment, which will comprise tests, minor projects, and discussions, will be done throughout the semesters.
Summative assessment will mostly involve end semester examinations and key projects, and it will be done at the end of every semester. The suggestion boxes will be used to collect and evaluate students’ propositions and opinions.
Caulfield, J. (2011). How to design and teach a hybrid course: Achieving student- centered learning through blended classroom, online, and experiential activities. Sterling, VA: Stylus Pub.
Grove, A. (2013). ACPHS: SAT scores, costs and admissions data. Web.
Mason, R. (2001). Models of online courses. Education at a Distance, 15(7), 1-10.
Ndon, U. T. (2010). Hybrid-context instructional model: The internet and the classrooms: The way teachers experience it. Charlotte, NC: Information Age Pub.
O’Laughlin, N. J. (2007). A professional development program for converting classroom courses into hybrid courses. Delaware, FL: University of Delaware.
Snart, J. A. (2010). Hybrid learning: The perils and promise of blending online and face- to-face instruction in higher education. Santa Barbara, CA: Praeger.
Wang, F. L., Fong, J., & Kwan, R. (2010). Handbook of research on hybrid learning models: Advanced tools, technologies, and applications. Hershey, PA: Information Science Reference.
Wormeli, R. (2006). Fair isn’t always equal: Assessing and grading in the differentiated classroom. Westerville, OH: National Middle School Association.