Blended Learning in UPC
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Blended Learning in UPC Part of Building a Strategic Approach across the Colleges Introduction

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Blended Learning in UPC

Part of Building a Strategic Approach across the Colleges


This small scale project is part of a wider project in the Colleges aimed at raising levels of awareness, examining levels of engagement and activity and identifying how blended learning might be supported in terms of training and development.

UoP Portal vs. local college VLE

The UPC eLearning strategy states that;

“Staff will be encouraged to place learning materials on the UoP portal”.

However, since September 2005 many colleges have set up their own VLE systems which has led to confusion for staff.

“I feel very much pushed from pillar to post

re. the college VLE and the UoP portal and

which is more important”.

  • Results

    • High levels of both staff and student ICT skill and usage

    • Most staff and students using the VLE, only a small proportion using the Portal for module materials, despite strategy

    • Bothstaff and students demonstrated a real desire to engage with blended learning environments

UoP Student Portal

Student Survey

Some programmes not using any form of online teaching

resources, not even basic support.

Students expressed a desire for more online learning resources

and those who did not have any current provision wanted some.

“I don’t think we have anything but I would love it.

It sounds fantastic”

Students felt staff needed more training in order to dispel fears and learn to develop materials

Few students had received any formal training on either the VLE or the portal

Cornwall College’s example of a VLE system

  • Methodology

  • Staff Survey

    • Online questionnaire promoted to all UPC staff through College staff development coordinators

      • Less than 5% response rate – mostly from ICT champions

  • Student Survey

    • Focus groups on current blended learning activity.

    • Paper based questionnaire on perceptions of ICT in teaching and learning completed by every focus group participant

      • 21 participants across 3 colleges advertised on notice boards and promoted by staff

Staff Survey

Levels of engagement varied but most staff just posted materials such as handouts, and PowerPoint lectures and notes.

Almost all staff respondents wanted to develop more blended learning materials but did not have the time or the expertise.


Staff development provision and time made available

to enable the innovation of interactive materials to enhance student learning.

E-learning strategy review should allow staff to choose which online vehicle is most suited to their needs.

Students require formal training to ease accessibility to resources on both the student portal and their college VLE.

For further information contact::

Julie Johns, UPC e- Learning coordinator

Barry Smith, HELP community of practice leader

Julia Dawson HELP Research Fellow

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