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Learning Resource Center - Terre Haute

Class Instructional Methods

Ivy Tech offers several methods of instruction (also known as method of delivery) for classes. 

It's important that you understand the differences between how these courses are delivered so you can choose the instructional method that is right for you and for the classes you are taking. 

Here are some helpful instructional method terms and definitions:

  • Asynchronous:  Learning that is provided to students and accessed when they choose (e.g. a posted lecture recording that students can watch and post a discussion board comment about or assignments posted in a learning module to be completed by a specific deadline but at the student's pace prior to the deadline) . Asynchronous delivery allows students to self-pace their learning and access resources and support as needed.
  • Synchronous: Learning that is provided in a specific place, at a specific time, to all students (e.g. students participate in a live Zoom session from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. on Mondays and Wednesdays). Synchronous delivery provides students with immediate feedback from their teacher and / or classmates and allows for class activities to take place with the class as a group.
  • Webcast Technology: Technology allowing class participants to meet and interact with each other and course materials at a distance via cellular and/or broadband. Participation in courses using this technology require students to have sufficient broadband access and a device with a microphone or headset. Webcams may be required.
  • Proctored Exam: A proctored exam is an exam that is administered by an authorized, neutral proctor who ensures the identity of the test taker in a secure testing environment to maintain academic integrity.
  • Automated Proctoring:  Refers to tools, such as Respondus, that provide automated monitoring of exams with the ability to lock student participation into the testing application.

  • Traditional (Face to Face or F2F) Method [Course reference / abbreviation=TR]: 

All class sessions take place on campus with the instructor through lecture-based or hands-on class activities, with supplemental course learning material provided through IvyLearn or other technology platforms.

  • Online Only [Course reference / abbreviationI]: 

No time in the traditional classroom is required.  Course sessions take place online, although students may be required to take exams at an approved proctoring site (no more than two exams for program level courses and no more than four exams for academic skills advancement classes).

Most online course activities are asynchronous, although the course could involve scheduled activities such as online office hours, chats, or other “real-time” presentations. These activities must be posted on the class schedule at the start of the class and should be optional. If a synchronous activity is assessed as a part of the grade of the course, an alternate asynchronous activity must be available if a synchronous activity is required.  

  •  Blended (33% or more on Campus [Course reference / abbreviationBT]:  

Blended courses are a combination of traditional instruction with the addition of online and/or virtual instruction methods. For a course to be identified as a blended course for purposes of counting enrollments, no less than 1/3 of the contact hours of the course must be assigned to activities at an on-site instructional location. 

The blended online and/or virtual component includes significant activities which require engagement between faculty and student as well as from student to student. If virtual instruction is included, students must have sufficient broadband access and a device with a microphone or headset. A webcam may be required. If test proctoring is required, this must be in addition to the contact hours scheduled at the on-site instructional location. Notes on specific dates and times of meetings as well as participation requirements need to be provided to students through the registration system at the time of registration as well as in the course syllabus in IvyLearn.

  • Virtual Method (also known as Synchronous Online Video) [Course reference / abbreviationVI]: 

Students are not required to attend campus-based activities or classes, but students are required to participate in weekly live sessions via webcast technology following the course schedule or view a recording of the live session.

The remainder of the Virtual course activities are delivered asynchronously via IvyLearn. Fifty to one hundred percent of the contact hours will be assigned to live activities. The live sessions require students to have sufficient broadband access and a device with a microphone or headset. A webcam may be required.  Students may be required to take exams at an approved proctoring site or via other virtual proctoring options. If more than two exams are required, automated proctoring solutions should be used where available.

  • Learn Anywhere Method [Course reference / abbreviation= LA]:  

Learn Anywhere courses are taught from an on-site/campus instructional location following the course schedule and students can attend in-person or via live webcast technology such as Zoom.

If scheduled at multiple on-site instructional locations, the instructor will be in a classroom with students at one on-site instructional location while other students attend at a separate on-site instructional location(s) or virtually.  The course may be supplemented with other asynchronous activities via IvyLearn, but no less than 1/2 of the contact hours will be assigned to live activities.

In the event of rare and occasional absences, students may be given access to a recording of the live sessions for review.

Students choosing to attend live via webcast technology from an off-campus location will need sufficient broadband access and a microphone or headset.  A webcam may be required.  Students may be required to attend campus to visit the testing center to take proctored exams or to complete skills demonstrations.  





How Do I Know Which Course to Choose?


What Is Your Confidence Level with the Material?

If you have prior experience with the course content or you have a strong confidence threshold with the course content, an Online Only, Virtual, or Learn Anywhere class might be viable options for you.

However, if you need more than an online or virtual interaction in order to master the material, a Blended or Traditional classroom setting might be the best overall option for you. 

If you need time in the classroom with an instructor for the best class outcomes and you choose a Learn Anywhere class, plan on attending the campus sessions as much as possible.

How Self-Disciplined Are You?

Online Only courses and courses with a Virtual attendance component require strong time management skills and the ability to build time for coursework into your schedule or to attend class sessions virtually without distractions at specified day(s) and time(s). 

If you are easily distracted from completing tasks while working from home or on the go, a Traditional classroom instructional method might be your best class choice, or, if you choose a Learn Anywhere class, you might want to make sure you attend the actual class session, rather than Zooming from home or on the go..

Do You Have the Technology You Need to Succeed?

Regardless of which instructional method you choose, you will definitely need to assure that you have the appropriate technology available to successfully complete Ivy Tech courses.

Make sure you understand the technological tools you will need, and if you don't have these at home, make plans to use technology on campus or elsewhere. 

You might also want to check for available campus resources, like loaner laptops.  Terre Haute Ivy Tech students can contact our Student Success Coach, Melissa Kearns at with laptop loan requests.