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Modes of delivery

In this page we will examine some of the important factors that need to be considered when selecting the mode of delivery for a programme or module. 

The mode of delivery of a module or programme describes how the learning experiences, activities and content will be delivered and facilitated, and should reflect the needs of the intended learner.

There are a number of overarching considerations that should be taken into account when deciding on the mode of delivery such as student attendance, delivery approaches and the use of synchronous or asynchronous activities.

Click on the information button in the diagram below to find out more about these overarching considerations. 

Factors to be considered when selecting the mode of delivery

The mode of delivery for a programme or module is dependent on several factors, particularly the context of the programme/ module, the teaching and learning environment available, the student cohort and their specific requirements, the subject discipline, year or level of study and the intended learning outcomes.

The following table contains a list of factors, associated questions, and influences that are useful to take into account when deciding on the mode of delivery of your programme/module.   

Factor Questions to ask Influences
Programme or module context

(1) How does the module or programme fit in within the broader context of your school? 

(2) Are their professional body influences or standards that will impact? 

Programme/module cohesion is essential when considering delivery methods, assessment strategies, and professional body requirements.
Teaching and Learning environment and approach 

(1) What is the teaching experience off staff involved? 

(2) What types of teaching strategies are commonly used?

(3) What technologies are available to support the desired modes of delivery?

Staff may require re/training to deliver teaching in unfamiliar environments. The choice of teaching strategy may be limited by the technologies available for deliver.  
Student Cohort

(1) How familiar are your students with a college environment? 

(2) What is your student cohort educational background? 

(3) What specific needs have your students? 

(4) How many students will you have on the programme/module? 

Students may have different levels of knowledge and skills, more experience than others at navigating college, and be working full-time or part-time with family needs.  Communication/feedback for large class cohorts will need to be effectively managed 
Discipline/Year of Study

(1) Are there discipline specific influences that impact on the mode of delivery? 

(2) What is the year of study? 

Work or clinical experience may be a requirement of the programme/module, which may be dependent on the year of study.  Students at latter stages of a programme may have developed greater independent study skills.
Learning Outcomes

(1) How does the mode of delivery impact on the achievement of the learning outcomes 

(2) Will both synchronous and asynchronous activities be required? 

Demonstration of certain skills may require an in-person or real-time activity. 

Key Takeaways

When considering the mode of delivery of a programme or module the following five key factors need to be considered:
  • Consistency and cohesion of approaches used should be maintained throughout the programme of study
  • Staff experience in supporting the delivery mode and technologies used
  • Student background and specific needs
  • Discipline specific teaching, learning and assessment activities required
  • Achievement of learning outcomes must be supported by relevant teaching, learning and assessment activities.