I chose to develop a blended version of my Dental Radiography course because I think courses with didactic and lab components are perfect for it. Students can learn through different media (PowerPoints, textbook readings, videos, and discussions) online- on their own time and at their own pace. In lab, they can receive face-to-face instruction with hands-on learning and creative activities that reinforce and deepen the knowledge they learned earlier online.
When I think about other courses that would work well with this format, two particular courses that I teach come to mind. The first is Oral Embryology and Histology. This is a course taken in the junior year of the dental hygiene program and provides a foundation for understanding concepts in Oral Pathology (the other course I would like to blend). Oral Embryology and Histology would be wonderful as a blended course because it has a challenging didactic component and a lab component. I think it would really benefit the students to have the ability to learn the information at their own pace with helpful links to videos and information that might clarify difficult topics. The lab component would consist of guided activities including looking at histology slides under the microscope and mini-projects related to the online modules.
My other course, Oral Pathology, would be fantastic as a blended course. I had the experience of taking Oral Pathology online when I completed my Bachelor’s degree in Dental Hygiene. That online course actually used the same textbook that I currently use in the class I teach. I’ve always wanted to include more case studies in the course, but never seem to have enough time. I would love to put most of what is currently taught in the classroom online so we can spend time working on case studies in class; I think it would really help them learn to apply their knowledge in a meaningful way.