ORGANIZATIONAL AND FINANCIAL ASPECTS OF BLENDED LEARNING IMPLEMENTATION AT THE UNIVERSITY AS A TEACHING SUPPORTING SOLUTION
1 Bielsko-Biala School of Finance and Law (POLAND)
2 University of Zilina (SLOVAKIA)
About this paper:
Conference name: 10th annual International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 16-18 November, 2017
Location: Seville, Spain
Abstract:Educational process is constantly changing, striving to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of teaching methods. The ever-changing market needs, forced by the company desire to build and maintain a competitive position on the market, are key element for universities and companies itself in finding solutions to improve the quality of teaching process and to reduce associated costs. The changing market demands for specific competencies and the speed of their achievement, as well as participation in training outside of work or residence, require the use of modern information technology tools to shorten the distance between the university or training center and the participant. Increasingly visible is the great impact of Information and Communication technologies and techniques on almost every sphere of human’s life, including the teaching process. It is also important for these dynamic changes to remain in line with the market trends and with the requirements of the Ministry of Science and Higher Education which are e.g.: improvement of quality of the education process, promotion of best practices, transfer of knowledge and innovative solutions between market and higher education institutions (in accordance with Europe 2020 strategy). New information technologies implemented in blended learning solutions (mixed process of teaching seems to have greater influence on achieved learning outcomes) bring significant support in this area. It is possible to gain new skills not only faster but also cheaper and in more effective way, e.g. reduction of employees’ costs of commuting and maintenance, costs associated with the loss of employees at the workplace during training. That’s way distance learning teaching/training solutions are becoming increasingly popular, as evidenced by the numbers of students studying in the so-called “virtual universities” e.g. The Open University in the UK. In the quest to obtain the best results of the learning process, a number of teaching platforms and models have been created and developed. The paper is going to present benefits, especially economic ones, of using IT technology in speeding up teaching process at universities. The basis for these considerations were an international project with Icelandic partner and solutions implemented at an academic institution. The pilot survey was carried out mainly on academic staff involved in the project at this institution. The researches were carried out in Poland and Slovakia.
Keywords: Economy, e-learning, blended learning, higher education, ICT.