Flipping the classroom

Knowing that the learners of the 21st century are wired 24/7, teachers are increasingly directing students’ natural online proclivity towards school and academic work. It’s referred to as a myriad of interesting-sounding catchwords such as flipped learning, flipped teaching, reverse teaching, reverse instruction and the inverted classroom. Whilst certainly not a new approach to teaching, this method’s momentum is growing. OEB 2012 will feature a number of sessions exploring the effectiveness of the flipped class.


In a flipped class, students read articles online, conduct web searches and research, listen to podcasts and watch videos, and participate in collaborative online discussions and meetings. And this all takes place either at home, on the underground, at school or university, in libraries and dorms – basically anywhere and everywhere. Coming to class then becomes an active experience that is grounded in discussion, debate and analysis of the information gained through the students’ preparation via videos, reading and listening, rather than passive listening.


But how effective is this pedagogical approach? Could it hold the key to the future of learning? At OEB 2012, educational practitioners will debate the effectiveness and applicability of this learning model in the session Flipped Learning: The Classroom of the Future? Jörn Loviscach, Fachhochschule Bielefeld (University of Applied Sciences), Germany, will share his experiences of using YouTube for educational videos, while Mikko Vasko, Karlsruhe University of Applied Sciences, Germany will discuss the use of flipped learning in Engineering Studies, and Liora Groen, VU University Amsterdam, will weigh up the pros and cons of using weblectures in learning.


One of the most famous forms of flipped learning is video, as popularised by the Khan academy. But a poorly-made video is likely to be received with disdain by learners, particularly those in generation Z, who are highly sophisticated consumers of all types and styles of video and film, as well as native video makers. Through their own practical involvement they understand the everyday grammar of film, and are therefore highly critically aware of the video content they consume.  OEB 2012 will feature a whole host of sessions focusing on making video work for learning. A pre-conference highlight is the expert-led Masterclass, which will cover the key steps and aspects of making education videos. Award-winning filmmaker Michael Grigsby will speak in OEB’s opening plenary session about the role of video in learning, while budding educational filmmakers can take their pick from five different LAB sessions which will provide participants with the tools and techniques needed to succeed in all stages of video production.


Other tools commonly used in the flipped class include interactive quizzes, online collaborative projects and podcasts. But is there a risk that learners, including those of school age, aren’t as au fait with today’s array of technological tools as we might assume? In the session Not All NetGens are Digital Natives: Tailoring Media Education is a Must , Christine Hoffmann, Hochschule für Angewandte Wissenschaften Hamburg, Germany, Tore Ståhl, Arcada University of Applied Sciences and University of Tampere, Finland and Sylvia van den Berg, AYNI Bolivia Nederland, The Netherlands, will provide an insight into the characteristics and heterogeneity of the learners of today and the future, and will share good practices on tailoring media for education.


To what extent could such pedagogical approaches be used throughout the world, and could they help to provide education for all? The session Meanwhile, on the Other Side of the World… will discuss the merits of blended learning approaches with speakers including a group of students from South Africa, an educator from Cirque de Soleil and a journalism student from far away. African advances in ICT integration will be presented in the session ICT Integration in an African Educational Setting, which will feature speakers from Malawi, Kenya, Tunisia and Nambia.


The session Not All NetGens are Digital Natives: Tailoring Media Education is a Must will be held on Thursday 29th November from 11:45 to 13:15. Meanwhile, on the Other Side of the World… will take place on Thursday 29th November from 14:30 to 16:00 and ICT Integration in an African Educational Setting will also take place from 14:30 to 16:00 on Thursday 29th November.

2 Responses

  1. Erik Woning

    Very interesting article and I hope to see more on this subject at the Educa. I believe that a key component is the quality of the teacher. I’ll be discussing just that at the session ‘Succesful Teaching: Skills to Encourage Freedom and Creativity’ on Friday at 14:15.

    Good pedagogy is important and the effective use of technology is just another tool in the toolbox of great teachers.

  2. Reo

    Important points are discussed for inverted learning. Needs more technical part have to be integrated one by one even we already have a great smart platform.
    Flipped learning have to be supported by a nice contents without teacher or classroom but there are huge potentials to enhance current educational paradigms. Expecting new Platform of Learning..


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