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In-Person, Hybrid, and Online Learning

Last updated September 27, 2020

With the uncertainty surrounding COVID-19 and how students will return to school, many are wondering what the 2020-2021 school year will look like. There are three main approaches schools are using that students should be aware of to help prepare for the most successful school year. Check out the definitions below to learn more about each option and think about how you can set yourself up for success whatever model your school uses.


This is the traditional instructional style that many are familiar with. As part of an “in-person” school or class, teachers and students are together in the classroom for all instructional time. To protect student and teacher health, class size may be reduced or altered and there may be additional requirements (masks) or restrictions (moving around the class to work in groups), so make sure to check all school or class details


If a school or class is listed as “hybrid” there will be a mix of in-person and remote (or online) teaching. Teachers and students will be together in the classroom at times but there will also be class work remotely. This remote work may be online together as a class or completed at the student’s own pace. The exact structure of a “hybrid” course can look very different so it's important to pay attention to specific instructions.

Online Learning

Online learning is what many experienced this past Spring - completing all instruction and requirements outside of the classroom. However, this type of remote learning can be completed synchronously or asynchronously.

Another way to describe synchronous learning is “together” or “at the same time”. This time of distance learning is usually regular class meetings where teachers and students gather for instruction through digital platforms (such as ZOOM, online classrooms, Microsoft Teams, and many others).

Asynchronous is when online learning is “at your own pace” or not happening at a unified time. Teachers and students will not meet together at a set time. Readings, assignments, and quizzes or tests may still have a specific due date, but students can choose to complete classwork on their own schedule and pace.

Many states, districts, and schools may use multiple approaches throughout the year. Make sure you are prepared to be successful in distance learning by checking out this video with three easy tips! Learning options will differ across the nation so staying up-to-date is important .

Need help figuring out how to be successful in your school’s instructional mode? Text “Hello” to 33-55-77 to get all your questions answered! 

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