University of Wisconsin–Madison

Hybrid Instruction

Lecturer Tim Buhl teaches the Marketing Strategic Pricing class in the Morgridge Auditorium on the first day of class

Hybrid vs HyFlex course delivery

HyFlex delivery is when you have remote and in-person students at the same time in a session. In the same course session, some of the students would be participating in person and others would be joining remotely. 

Hybrid delivery is when a course has sessions with a variety of delivery modes, but not in the same session. For example, a hybrid course might have one online session and one in-person session each week.

(Otherwise, visit to find your course type for advice on best practices for your course.)

What are Hybrid Courses?

“Hybrid course sections involve a mix of in-person and online instructional meetings between instructors and students. The range of what is included is broad and flexible by design.”

Defining Modes of Instruction and Synchronicity,
Instructional Continuity UW-Madison Instructional Continuity

Hybrid courses can be difficult to implement due to the in-person requirement.

  • For hybrid courses, challenges to teaching effectively include students being in Madison for the in-person aspect, figuring out numbers for in-person classes, deciding what is synchronous or asynchronous, and reserving ample space for students to come to class.
  • One of the challenges of hybrid instruction is the in-person requirement for the class, which limits the students who can participate in the in-person aspects of hybrid courses. Some students might still be required to stay home in a different country, which would then disqualify them from taking hybrid classes. For more information about alternatives and accommodations for students who cannot attend in-person portions of a class: Preparing to Teach in Different Classroom Types

Hybrid courses should vary between asynchronous and synchronous based on the part of the class.

  • Courses with hybrid styles are effective when used correctly. Professors must determine if their material would greatly benefit by in-person instruction. It is popular for hybrid classes to have asynchronous lectures online (Lecture Recordings Should be 15 Minutes or Less) and socially-distant in-person discussions.


Best practices are:

  • Consider doing optional hybrid classes. Many students prefer being in person for classes, therefore it is always good to give the option when possible. Making multiple in-person discussions as well as online discussions to fit all students is highly recommended. See Considerations for Delivering Lectures for more information.

Examples of teaching solutions that work for course type

Examples of assignments are below, with ideas for adapting them to the format of your course:

Assignment Type Assignment that require in-person interactions Synchronous Assignments Asynchronous Assignments Hybrid
Individual Presentations Zoom or BBCollaborate meetings Recorded introductory  lectures for modules
Group Presentations Powerpoint presentation with questions Powerpoint file or recording Powerpoint file or recording
Case Studies Discussing case-study with other students in class Canvas Discussion board Create groups of in-person groups and remote groups online to discuss case study
Quizzes and Exams In-person exam or having the quiz/exam available during a specific time frame The quiz/exam can be available during a specific time frame or over multiple days Powerpoint file or recording
Readings and videos Class discussions and breakout groups Upload documents to Canvas Files; pre-recorded lectures uploaded to Kaltura Powerpoint file or recording

Incorporate these references:

“Asynchronous activities afford more flexibility and can make it easier for all students to participate. These activities may include peer-to-peer group work, recorded student presentations, quizzes, responses to written prompts and/or discussion.”
Instructional Continuity for instructors: Conducting Course Activities

Teaching With Technology:

  • “How do I leverage technology to support active, blended and online learning?”
  • “How can I help my students succeed with their digital assignments?”

For more information about modes of instruction visit the Instructional Continuity page for Defining Modes of Instruction and Synchronicity

For more information about COVID-19 on visit COVID-19 Response.