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Flipped Classroom

Lesson goals and objectives

This module will:

  • Give you a starting point for exploring flipped classroom.

The flipped classroom promises to utilize the valuable synchronous time we have with our learners better. Given the many resources available on youtube.com and via websites of publishers (for example) we can assign these to the students to watch or read before the class and use the time together for in-class activities, more advanced problems, individual attention and activities with higher added value.

  • In a university project management course students are assigned chapters for each week. The classes are dedicated to students working on tasks in groups based on the reading. As instructor I dedicate time to the groups providing feedback and coaching. This is rudimentary flipped classroom; difficulty being that most other classes are traditional with a 90minute lecture.

  • If you search on Google for flipped classroom, you will get well over 20M hits. This is already a well established instructional approach.
  • The most famous person associated with the method is Eric Mazur of Harvard University. You can find his book or talks on “peer instruction”.
  • Easy part, transfer of information happens outside of class (first-exposure learning). The class time is used for synthesis, analysis, problem solving.
  • How can you do it in practice? Assign specific chapters of the book. Still better, a video. Be realistic in what you are asking them to do.
  • Will the students read it? This seems to be the same as when you ask them to read the textbook. Like in other approaches, key is consistency. If more courses use this approach, it will be easier for you. The first time students are asked to do so, possibly they will ignore the assignment (in the expectation that it will go away as it usually does). If you become discouraged, they are validated and you did not give the method really a chance.
  • Also your students should be able to see the value of what you are asking them.
  • Use the class time for activities with higher added value. These can be experiments, peer teaching, joint work on larger project assignments.

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