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What is ‘blended learning’?

As a student, it’s likely you’ve been studying in a classroom for most of your life and attending lectures. UCT Board Course has taken many factors into account regarding the modern working individual wishing to achieve their CA (SA), and has chosen to offer a new way of studying: blended learning.

What does this new blended learning model have to offer? Here are a few factors that UCT Board Course considered when we put together this education model:

  1. You are working. You are now a senior member of the team and not only will the work be more challenging but you are also going to be coaching the new members of the team that have just joined. Your time will be precious and time set aside for learning must be productive.
  2. Active learning beats passive attendance. It is comforting to attend a lecture every week, it feels like progress is being made, but being physically present is not the same as learning. Fighting traffic, sitting in a large group after a full day at work is not conducive for quality learning. It might work for some people but does it work for you? A small amount of quality active learning beats hours of inefficient passive learning.
  3. Flexibility. You are given submissions, videos, online quizzes and it is clear what is expected on you. You can look at your diary and plan when is best to put in the 4 hours of work per week. Is it an hour on Monday night or would you prefer early mornings? You decide.
  4. This new exam covers much more than auditing. No longer can one person fly around the country claiming to be an expert. This new case study is bigger than any individual; it needs a team of experts to truly understand all the issues facing a company included in a case study. We believe that online education gives you access to experts that can slice case studies in different ways according to their particular subject strengths. We think that finance, strategy and risk management skills (to name a few) would be a struggle to lecture all in one sitting. These skills are best found in a diverse team of experts that are available to you 24/7.
  5. Live-streaming is effective. This involves a lecturer driving 5 minutes to the GetSmarter studios and then being available to answer any questions that students may have online. The session is recorded for those that miss it and these form a tremendous resource. Anyone can participate from the comfort of the office, client or home.
  6. Discussion forums are effective. You will be able to post questions for academics and these will be available for all participants to view. We have found that many are intimidated to ask a question during a lecture, but feel comfortable doing so online. We will scan these discussions frequently and also distribute a “best of” from the discussion forum on a bi-weekly basis to highlight important discussions taking place.
  7. Frequent assessment and quality feedback. We have taken the decision that our time is going to be best spent marking submissions and providing high quality feedback to students, as opposed to flying around the country. This new exam format as well as the uncertainty of marking that consists of “no marks” means that frequent high quality feedback is going to be a crucial aspect of preparation.

We believe that these factors make it a compelling option when faced with the challenge of juggling Articles while studying for the biggest exam of your life.