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School of Education - George Mason University

Upcoming Infosession

Teachers are increasingly being tasked with teaching courses that blend online and in-person instruction as well as fully online courses. The graduate certificate in Blended and Online Learning in Schools (BOLS) is designed to support teachers within their current contexts. We provide a foundational understanding of the online and blended teaching and learning models as well as a focus on tools and technologies that enable online and blended teaching and learning to happen.

By offering the certificate program fully online, students also experience effective online instruction firsthand as learners. The program models a variety of online practices and instructional designs that promote excellence. For instance, online learners can feel isolated and anonymous in an online learning environment, so students in the program receive a high level of communication and feedback from their instructors, and most of the courses incorporate student-to-student communication and collaboration.

Importantly, all of the BOLS graduate certificate courses can be applied to the Master’s concentration in Learning Technologies in Schools.

What Are Online and Blended Learning?

• Online learning means courses where the teaching and learning occurs primarily online.
• Blended courses combine in-person and online learning in ways that provide students with more control over the details of their learning (time, place, path, and pace) than fully in-person formats.

What Are Some Possible Careers?

Most BOLS students are P-12 teachers preparing for blended and/or online courses.

What Are Former BOLS Students Saying?

“What makes the Blended and Online Learning in Schools Program so unique is the fact that you’re learning how to be an effective teacher in an online community while being a student in an online community. Each professor I had throughout the program was a master in both instructional design and fostering relationships between students. I not only learned from the course content, but by watching how my professors administered feedback, designed assignments, and supported students. Additionally, the program is designed for you to apply the skills you’re learning by developing instructional units for your own, individual classroom each semester.”
—Kristin Cady, third-grade teacher

“When I learned about the BOLS program I knew it was just what I was looking for and was eager to apply. The program taught me how to balance technology in my classroom in a way that has allowed me to capture the best of my students through both face-to-face and online learning. The BOLS program has transformed the way I teach. Everything we learned was practical and was able to be applied directly to my classroom. It has reenergized my love for teaching.”
—Christine McLaughlin, fourth-grade teacher

What Are Example Materials Used in the Program?

K–12 Blended Teaching: A Guide to Personalized Learning and Online Integration, a free online book: https://edtechbooks.org/k12blended
• The Online Teaching Mixtape, a website full of practical tips and examples for developing a sense of community, providing feedback to students, creating clear directions, and teaching challenging concepts: https://sites.google.com/view/onlinemixtape/
• "The Visual Guide to Creating Quality Video Recordings," a Google Document with visual examples of what to do and what not to do when recording video messages or holding live sessions: https://bit.ly/VisualGuide4Video