Date of Conferral



Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)




Billie V. Andersson


Blended learning has become an alternative method to promote student achievement in a technology-orientated society. Students enrolled in blended learning classes in a midwestern suburban high school are outperforming students in the traditional face-to-face classes on standardized tests, yet there was little information about the instructional strategies used in the blended learning classroom that result in higher student achievement. The purpose of this qualitative instrumental case study was to explore what instructional strategies were implemented to foster student achievement in a successful high school English and social studies blended learning program. The focus of the study was to understand which instructional strategies were implemented in the blended learning environment. To explore this issue, the conceptual framework was connectivism with the fundamental principle that knowledge is built by connecting nodes. Five English and five social studies blended learning teachers with at least two years of teaching experience participated in this study. Data sources were interviews of teachers and an audit of the teachers’ learning management systems. Data were analyzed using lean coding and then examined for emerging themes. Teachers indicated small group instructional strategies were essential to allow students to analyze nodes and build new knowledge. The majority of teachers also used a flipped method of instruction. Another important finding was the study site implementing best practices to foster student achievement. Implications for positive social change include a teacher or a school implementing at least one to two of the study’s outcomes to foster student achievement in blended learning classes.