Blended (also called hybrid) courses are designed to reduce the amount of in-class teaching time, shifting a portion of course delivery to self-paced asynchronous online learning. For example, in a three-hour/week course, one hour could be used to deliver content online and the class could meet in-person for two hours. Often, this model creates opportunities to shift content delivery online in order to create more time for active learning when students and instructors meet. During a time of physical distancing, this may be more challenging to achieve.
For the purposes of planning for a return to campus, blended/hybrid course design could provide more flexibility in classroom use. For example, more classroom space could be leveraged by reducing classroom use by courses by 30%. Alternatively, with lecture-based material delivered online, large classes could meet in smaller sections. To take advantage of this mode in the short-term, course scheduling might require alignment.