The online How to Manage Your Forest series of narrated PowerPoints is nearly complete (http://extensionweb.forestry.oregonstate.edu/programs/how-manage-your-forest) and while the series have value as web-accessible publications, combining these programs with Face2Face classroom time in a hybrid format seems to hold the potential for realizing more value by reaching larger and/or new audiences and changing the focus of the F2F time to discussion and hands-on application instead of lecture.
Enrollment is envisioned as a fee-based, defined time period structure. The HTMYF materials may be used selectively around various themes, such as Silviculture, Forest Health, Business Management, etc. It is possible to do a “full meal deal” offering sort of like our traditional Basic Forestry Shortcourse workshops but that may involve much too long a time frame to be practical in a hybrid format, shorter “chunks” seem to be more workable but that’s something that will need be explored as we learn more about who the audiences are, their expectations, learning styles, etc., etc.
It is likely that at least initially, the participants will be mostly family forestland owners. Partly because that’s who the material is primarily developed for and who I’ve been focused on with the BFSC workshops. But as I gain experience with creating and offering hybrid courses and the audiences that are attracted to the material and format then hopefully the courses can attract other audiences such as teachers, Master Naturalist inclined folks and others.
At this point, my knowledge of hybrid courses might be best described as slightly greater than a wealth of ignorance. This course has been helpful in understanding some of the concepts and tools applicable to hybrid learning but it’ll take some hands-on experience to learn how to balance the online and F2F activities. My initial thought was to arrange the material with a weekly topic focus in order to move things along at a reasonable pace and to keep everyone focused and on the same page. Participants would receive a to-do list of online activities such as reviewing the HTMYF materials, suggested readings, suggested activities and possibly some blogging/Q&A stuff and so on. The F2F time would be spent discussing the material, doing further activities/exercises and so on as appropriate for the topic being discussed.