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Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Flipped Classrooms Gaining Momentum

A new report from the Center for Digital Education and Sonic Foundry found that half of the faculty members participating in an the online survey said they are using the flipped-classroom model or plan to in the next 12 months. Of the respondents already using the technique, 57% said the experience was successful.

A flipped classroom allows students to learn new content at home online, with what used to be homework assignments being done in class with the instructor offering more personalized guidance and interaction.

According to the study, 81% of respondents reported an “improved mastery of information” from students, while 80% said there was “improved retention of information.” Instructors also cited better learning experiences for students, greater availability of technology, and positive results from trials as the top reasons for using flipped classrooms.

“Based upon my experience, the benefits of the flipped-classroom model far outweigh the challenges, and I’ve seen the difficulties with implementing the model decrease over time as efficiencies are realized,” Clemson University lecturer Ralph Welsh wrote in the report. “It has also allowed me to tailor my classroom time more toward answering specific student questions and discussing the material at a more applied, higher level of thinking.”

Preparing for a flipped classroom takes more time, according to 75% of the responding faculty members, but 83% agreed or strongly agreed that the model had a positive impact on their classrooms. Another 86% said student attitudes improved as well.

A quarter of the respondents said they plan to use flipped classrooms across all disciplines and 51% record their own video content.  A webcast of the findings is available at sonicfoundry.com.

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