L.Y. Lim

National University of Singapore (SINGAPORE)
Innovative methods have been explored to enhance the learning and teaching activities in universities. In recent years, the use of technology has been adopted on a wide scale with focus on online teaching using the web. This paper discusses the use of the blended learning approach in teaching undergraduate students. Blended approach combines the use of e-lectures with physical onsite classroom lectures. This integrated approach has the advantage of providing convenience to students where they can learn at a measured pace suited to them. While many researchers have outlined the benefits of outline learning others have questioned whether technological methods are indeed solutions to enhancing learning and have expressed caution when using electronically delivered learning to examine whether such technologies are appropriate for enhancing the learning outcomes. Some suggested that the key to successful use of technology for learning is to implement an effective pedagogy within the learning environment and focus on the specific design of the course and development of tutor facilitating skills.

Blended learning is particularly useful for property education as it provides a valuable platform for simulated learning experience which will enhance the student learning experiences by creating opportunities for them to improve their understanding through their own exploration and research of certain issues. The scope of this study was confined to students undertaking an undergraduate real estate module at the National University of Singapore. The face-to-face lectures normally span over a period of 12 weeks. For the purpose of this experiment, 4 of the 12 weeks were conducted using online lectures applying the university online technology.

The investigation was carried out through a qualitative and quantitative approach. A qualitative study was first done where the students were asked in an interview to comment on the use of blended teaching, and the improvements to be made. In the quantitative method, a questionnaire was designed. The questionnaire consists of factors that would affect the blended method of teaching drawn on findings of past research on blended learning. Students were asked to complete the questionnaire. The results of the survey and interviews are discussed and the implications highlighted. The results of this study show that a good mix of teaching methods are necessary which are able to suit the needs of the different learning styles and preferences of students. The study has revealed the potential for the use of the blended teaching approach.