Strategic Approach to Blended Active Learning (SABAL)

Enrol in our 'Strategic Approach to Blended Active Learning (SABAL)' course. SABAL is a practice-based program. It aims to introduce you to key practices and procedures that support university teaching and learning, particularly in the domains of active learning.The program content considers key educational theories, and draws upon the evidence-base provided by recent scholarship and educational research in the field of collaborative active learning and to create an understanding of what blended learning looks like within your discipline. There are also opportunities to work collaboratively and to share practice and experience with your colleagues, both face to face and online, benefiting from their insight and expertise. By undertaking a range of modules, you will be able to develop your knowledge and skills further in the areas of active learning, feedback and assessment following the collaborative socio-constructivist approach in the Community of Inquiry framework.Critical reflection on your teaching practice is the core of the program, and forms the basis for all the work you will do. We have also designed it so that it may support you to meet most of the requirements for active learning.

The program is delivered via blended mode. It incorporates:

  • Six face-to-face collaborative workshops with supporting online resources
  • Online learning for independent study on a Moodle site

Express Your Interest

Target audience

  • Academics  aiming to implement active learning, particularly blended learning
  • Academic staff whose view of teaching is oriented to and focused on students and their learning

Module hours

  • 3 Hours


  • Dr Chan Chang Tik

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the programme participants will be able to:
  • Identify and discuss common concerns of active learning leading to key components of collaborative learning
  • Design and plan effective active learning activities appropriate to students’ level and discipline
  • Articulate the rationale and value of student feedback literacy in the context of the disciplines
  • Develop approaches to delivering feedback that enhance student engagement while ensuring a sustainable strategy for the academic
  • Describe, in the context of their discipline, how an environment can be developed to encourage feedback between student peers, between demonstrators and students, and through student self-reflection
  • Critically review the alignment of assessment to peer instruction and active learning

Course Structure


Module Name

Module Synopsis

Module 1

(6 hours)

Foundation for Active learning Activities

This module draws your attention to the pertinent features of collaborative active learning. Consequently, when you design activities for collaborative active learning you may want to focus on engagement, particularly for the academic low achievers and also how to get your students to respond to the reading assignment. To this end, the Explanation Strategies are used in the design of the activities. In what follows, you will experience first-hand the design of online and offline activities for either STEM or non-STEM units/courses.

Module 2

(3 hours)

Foundation for Active Learning Feedback

Sometimes lecturers wonder why their students do not act on the feedback provided. One possible explanation is because of student feedback literacy. In addition, you will practise on how to provide constructive feedback, peer feedback, formative feedback and process feedback. Still though, what matters most in this module is how to implement socio-constructivist feedback where you will experience how to feedforward and also to close a feedback loop.

Module 3

(3 hours)

Foundation for Active Learning Assessment

Peer instruction is an active, collaborative learning approach; therefore, this module allows you to try it out between the groups in order to tell apart assessment from evaluation. Subsequently, focusing on a system for classifying active learning methods, this module invites you to apply the system to differentiate between assessment of-, for- and as-learning. Finally, you will practise assessment for learning through role playing by acting out how to provide and react to feedback and also how to debrief.

Module 4

(6 hours)

Active Learning Pedagogical Strategy: Blended Learning

The design of blended learning is guided by the Community of Inquiry (CoI) framework. Specifically, you will learn how to design the Social Presence and the Cognitive Presence in accordance to their respective processes. Importantly, from the Teaching Presence perspective, you have to facilitate the outcomes of the earlier two presences and to apply direct instruction when required. Using CoI as a tool to facilitate blended learning would necessarily lead you to design a six-week teaching plan.