Issue #7, December 2007

  This issue focuses on the features and benefits of blending, and some of the resources available to BIS faculty members.


The next BIS Faculty meeting will be held on Friday, Dec. 7, 10:30 - 12:00 in Zehmer B. We'll discuss BIS expansion, blended learning and related topics.

Blackboard training is scheduled for Dec. 7 at 1:00 - 3:00 PM. Contact us if you'd like to attend. This is the first step in creating a blended course.

Do you have tips on using technology-based elements in course? Contact us and we'll share your ideas on the next issue of The Blender

In case you missed it, two installments from NPR's Series on E-Learning:

UVA Teaching Resource Center January Teaching Workshop, Monday, January 14, 2008. Get information and register online.

What is Blending?

Blending is using technology to complement your face-to-face course sessions. Blending can be done to different degrees. Low-level blending of a course can:

  • Provide an online space for your course that serves as a repository for assigned readings and course materials
  • Use an online discussion board to build on class discussions during your class meetings
  • Create an online space for students to collaborate and complete group work remotely
  • Use tools like Elluminate Live! to conduct class in real time on the web that allows interactive discussion and knowledge development

At a higher level, blending can be used to conduct your entire course online, using Blackboard to organize your course materials and manage your students’ work, and webinar tools like Elluminate Live! to conduct classes synchronously in real time.

Blending can involve different tools and different approaches to meet your course design and learning needs.
Recipe for a Well Blended Course
  1. Take one syllabus template for a course that uses technology-based elements
  2. Add a course shell, requested well in advance
  3. Mix in instructional design support to ensure that you are comfortable adapting to technology-based methods
  4. Add two training sessions, one for the instructor, another for the students
  5. Stir in knowledge sharing with colleagues
  6. Top with technical support, as needed


A Recipe for a Well Blended Course
Read on to find out more about the value of using blended learning in your course.

What Can Blending Do for Your Course?

Including technology-based instructional elements in your course allows you to
  • Provide your students with ongoing access to course materials, especially when content changes or is updated frequently
  • Create a space where you and your students can meet for knowledge-building and understanding
  • Reaching and connect with your students
  • Add flexibility to your course in terms of types of course materials you can provide, the learning styles you can explicitly accommodate and the methods available to your students for participating in your course
  • Provide you and your students with a backup plan should weather or other events prevent you and your students from meeting in person

Read on to find out about what is in place to support and prepare you for adding blended learning elements to your course.


Elluminate Live! is a webconferencing tool that supports you in conducting your course remotely and in real time.

Available to BIS Faculty to Prepare for Blending

Course planning. We have a syllabus template that includes elements of technology-based learning to support you in organizing your course.

Preparation. Training is available on using and integrating the different technologies into your courses. Training includes “practice sessions” which provide an opportunity to rehearse the tools before using them with your students. A Blackboard training session is scheduled for Dec. 14 at 1:00 PM. Conact us if you would like to attend.

Course design. Instructional design support is available for creating your blended course and identifying technology-based tools that will meet your instructional needs.

Tutorials. Training and support is available to prepare your students for accessing your online course materials and participating the technology-based elements of your course.

Technical support. Ongoing technical support is available via email, phone, and in person, as needed.




Contact us!

Instructional design involves putting together a plan that supports your learning goals, and creating a course that meets these goals and addresses your learners' abilities and needs.

Upcoming Events

Blackboard Training is scheduled for Dec. 7, 1:00 - 3:00 PM. Contact us for details.

UVA Teaching Resource Center January Teaching Workshop, Monday, January 14, 2008. Get information and register online.



For additional information, resources and archives see the BIS Blended Learning Project website at

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