Tutaleni I. Asino
Blog Post

HyFlex Brief

20/07/2021 Uncategorized
HyFlex Brief

A friend recently asked me about HyFlex, so I put together a quick brief based on my understanding. Please provide corrections or additions of what I have left out in the comments section.

What is HyFlex?

HyFlex is a course design model that combines elements/components of online and face to face classrooms. Essentially it presents components of “hybrid learning (which combines face-to-face with online learning) in a flexible course structure that gives students the option of attending sessions in the classroom, participating online, or doing both.” Although HyFlex is gaining a lot of attention since the advent of COVID19, it has been around at least since around 2006 and in 2010 Educause provided a brief two-page summation of the “7 Things You Should Know About…The Hyflex Course Model” (https://library.educause.edu/-/media/files/library/2010/11/eli7066-pdf.pdf).


While the challenges about classroom space and challenges facing institutions to reopen has made this model palatable, at the core, the model is not about teaching in terms of emergencies, rather it is about learner agency and flexibility. It is a student-centred model to learning. In a HyFlex model, students can change their mode of attendance on a weekly basis or decide on a topic by topic basis. Attendance is depended on the learners need or preferences. In practicality, this means that the learner can choose on Monday to come physically to class one week, choose to participate in a live class via zoom the following week and on the third week decides to only participate asynchronously in a class. From a course design standpoint, HyFlex requires that the instructor design a class that can be delivered in all those three modes. The course content has to allow the student to participate in all three formats, so the activities should be deliverable in all those three formats.


What is a HyFlex course?

A HyFlex course is a course that allows each individual student to choose whether they attend class in person in the classroom, attend through an online conferencing platform such as Zoom or Adobe Connect, or participate on their own at the time of their choosing through a learning management system like Canvas, Blackboard, etc. Integral to such a course is student choice, meaning that the student can choose any of the mode at any point throughout the duration of the course.


How does it work?

HyFlex courses are typically listed as face-to-face courses because the registrar need to assign a physical classroom. The teacher goes to the actual physical class and delivers the class as it is done in the traditional model. Students can then be physically present in that class or they can connect remotely into that classroom. This means there has to be technological equipment that allows the students to connect and the instructor to broadcast. This can either be done through a laptop or a camera mounted into the classroom. The key however is to ensure that the student gets the same learning in any format that they choose.


What are some of the Benefits and Costs of HyFlex?

Students Faculty Administration / Institution
  • Increased access to courses. Gives flexibility to attend class when there are challenges, or if a class is scheduled at the same time
  • Students have more control over their day to day schedules associated with attending class
  • More learning resources, ranging from multiple modes of participation, robust instructional materials both physical and virtual
  • Ability to serve more students with the same resources (time, instructional materials)
  • Develop/Gain/Improve skills and experience in teaching online without giving up classroom instruction
  • Provide a built-in alternative when classroom instruction isn’t possible due to scheduling conflicts


  • Increase overall course enrollment by offering additional schedule and location flexibility to students
  • HyFlex may lead to increased per unit course load and reduced time to graduation
  • Increase individual class section (a single instance of a course) enrollment beyond the seat capacity of a physical classroom. HyFlex may reduce space requirements for expanding enrollment and increase the availability of bottleneck courses
  • Support innovative approaches to instruction that should contribute to greater student success, when done well
Students Faculty Administration / Institution
  • Demands that students have personal management skills and abilities to choose appropriate learning paths.
  • When online mode is chosen, it requires substantial time management skills.
  • Personal resources are required to participate in the online version of the course. These range from computer hardware, stable internet connectivity to a supportive space where they can participate from.
  • Student would also need to have the ability to learn through mediated experiences


  • Faculty would have to design and develop a course that supports multiple and simultaneous modes of student participation. This essentially mean creating fully face to face class, online synchronous class and online asynchronous formats.
  • Faculty would need to manage the technical complexity of multi-modal instruction, especially when online synchronous participation is supported. This is a challenge considering that not everyone has taught online
  • Faculty would need to perform administrative functions in different formats such as tracking attendance, monitoring participation and assessment activities, s well as providing interaction and feedback across formats.


  • Support additional faculty development and workload; formally or informally. This may require additional financial resources.
  • Ensure that the classroom are technologically to support online students for asynchronous connectivity, and to be able to capture in classroom activities that can be share.
  • To allow students to realize the value of scheduling flexibility associated with HyFlex, there may be a need to modify class scheduling system, student registration system, and manage clear communications



This summary was constructed from the following resources:


These Videos provide more information




Write a comment