With hybrid learning, training organizations are able to provide instructor-led training simultaneously to both in-class participants and remote learners. This engaging training delivery modality allows instructors to teach in a natural way, with minimal alterations to their presentation style. When it comes to presenting to a hybrid audience, these suggested best practices will assist instructors in delivering hybrid learning and providing an equal learning experience for in-class and remote learners.
Be Prepared to Present in the Hybrid Environment
Yes, practicing and being prepared is a necessary best practice for all instructors and presenters—no matter the training delivery platform. When it comes to presenting in a hybrid environment, there are a couple of additional considerations.
- In addition to knowing your material, it is crucial to know your platform. Take the time to push all the buttons. You should be able to seamlessly move between presenters and slides as well as know how to utilize teaching tools such as whiteboarding and annotations.
- You should also be familiar with your platform’s options for classroom control and know how to mute/unmute participants, close the classroom and allow others to share their screens.
Set Up Interactions Before Class Begins
It is important to set the expectation that your hybrid class will be interactive.
- Help participants be comfortable in the hybrid environment by welcoming them when they enter the class early.
- Remind students as they enter the class that they will need to be on camera and microphones enabled.
- Consider ice-breaker activities before class begins. Be sure to encourage interaction between in-class and remote participants. You can utilize the chat feature as well as webcams and microphones to encourage participants to introduce themselves.
- Make sure that remote participants know how they can engage in the interactive components.
Remember Your Remote Learners
For the most part, you should be able to teach your class much like any other instructor-led training. When doing this, remember to include your remote participants.
- Use eye contact. Don’t just ignore the webcam. You should occasionally look directly into the camera just as you would make eye contact with students who are physically in the classroom.
- Call out your students by name. Make sure that all of your remote students log in using their names. When you are asking questions or having a discussion, call them out by name. This will help keep them just as involved as those in the classroom.
- Keep track of your platform. If your platform provides a chat panel or an option for remote students to “raise their hand”, keep an eye on it. If a remote student has asked a question, you should address it just as you would a student in class.
Use Your Hybrid Platform Presentation Tools
Advanced teaching tools offered by hybrid learning platforms provide significant options to keep your participants engaged.
- Electronic whiteboarding offers many options to add interactivity to your class. Think outside the traditional whiteboard at the front of the classroom into how you can use this tool to engage your in-class and remote attendees.
- Annotation tools allow you to mark up your slides and presentation, helping to keep the attention of your learners. You can draw attention to particularly important points or make connections between your content. In many cases, learners are able to save these electronic markups to refer to later.
Ask Questions Early and Often
Don’t underestimate the value that your participants’ questions and knowledge can add to the learning environment. Include question and answer periods throughout the class.
- Offer opportunities for learners to both ask and answer questions. Participants’ knowledge and insights can fuel conversation and learning.
- Engaging questions from the instructor as well as answers from other participants can help keep learners thinking about the material and how it applies to them.
Good classroom instructors already know how to maintain an engaging and effective learning environment. By simply tweaking presentation skills to incorporate the needs of the virtual learners, instructors can often create a hybrid environment that is even more engaging and interactive than traditional instructor-led training.
For more information on hybrid learning best practices, as well as business and learner benefits, download our Complete Guide to Hybrid Learning.