Flipped classroom — Students as producers

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Conference Proceeding
2016 15th International Conference on Information Technology Based Higher Education and Training (IEEE ITHET), 2016, pp. 1 - 6 (6)
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Flipped classroom is something that more and more teachers add to their teaching plans. To use video recordings of their lectures as a support for the students and then focus more on working with the curriculum in class has become a method that is adopted by an increasing number of lecturers. In higher education the students are adults. This implies that it needs to be a form of lecturing adapted to adults. From the area of organizational learning, and from andragogy, the key to learning lies in motivation and the motivation is triggered by engagement that in its turn stems from involvement. However, involving the learner in their own learning process is also about “letting go” of the teachers' full control. But is it necessary to maintain control? Is it possible to view the undertaking as a learning experience also for the teacher/lecturer? What control should be executed and what can one let go of? The research done at Hedmark University of Applied Sciences, show some interesting features. The courses have been “Learning Organizations” (autumn) and “Knowledge Management” (spring). The lectures have been in the form of streaming video and the course is organized as three full day seminars each semester/course. Each day has had a similar approach: a browse through the different chapters that are going to be discussed. Then follows solving assignments related to the presented topics, first in small groups, then in plenary. Before the lunch break, the students present suggestions towards possible new assignments. During the lunch break, the lecturer writes up the assignment using the input from the students. There is a quality check regarding the topics being within the scope of the seminar. After the lunch break, the students solve the assignment, first in small groups, then in plenary. The assignment and solution(s) are discussed using the following standard: 1. What did we learn from the assignment? 2. What did we learn from making the assignment? 3. Which issues raised in the assignment could be elaborated further, either as a mandatory assignment (fall) or an exam (fall and spring)? It is important to be clear and unambiguous about the learning objective of the course. It is also important to keep the scope within the limitations of the main literature. (This does, however, not exclude added resources like research papers, external links, etc.) Note also that there is a balance between the literature of the curriculum and the way the courses are taught. The course on “Learning Organizations” includes a section on how adults learn, and thus they are “convinced” about the method of teaching. The course “Knowledge Management” has the course “Learning Organizations” as a prerequisite, so it also “inherits” the way of lecturing/teaching/learning. This involvement, the students claim, has contributed to enhancing their learning outcomes. The students seem to grow accustomed to the organization and “expectations” the program. Also the average grades from last fall have improved from an average grade of C to an average grade of B. The activity in the classroom has shifted from the front of the classroom to the whole classroom. A few Observations made during this process are: 1. The students are far more strict than the lecturer 2. The students suggest wider assignments than suggested by lecturer 3. The lecturer receives numerous tips and hints to support creating new assignments 4. Even if it is not 6 hours lecturing, it is a demanding task to secure that the assignments and solutions at all times are within the framework of the learning objective 5. For the second and the third seminar, it is important to seek to include at least parts of the previous literature. The paper will detail the different issues tied to the process of this “flip” and seek to explain the findings using relevant theory.
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