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flipping the classroom

Flipping the classroom is a teaching method that uses active learning techniques to engage students rather than traditional lectures alone. Although there is no one way to flip, or invert, the classroom, this method typically uses more student-centered learning strategies, including discussions, problem-based learning, working in groups and instruction by peers. These techniques enable students to read, write, discuss or solve problems in ways that help sharpen their skills in analyzing, synthesizing and evaluating class content.

Videos, podcasts, the Internet and other digital technologies like virtual leaning environments offer modern tools for flipping the classroom. Research shows that employing interactive techniques is an effective teaching strategy, and students have indicated that they prefer education with online elements.

Most educators combine flipping with traditional teaching techniques to make their lessons more varied. Flipping techniques give students pre-class exposure to the material and encourage them to prepare for class. By shifting content outside the classroom through lecture videos or pre-class readings, more engaging content can be used during class time.

Flipping can help students of all ability levels since they can master the material at their own pace. For example, students can watch a video as many times as needed or review certain parts of a recording until they feel comfortable with the information. On the other hand, other students can work at a faster pace if they choose. Pre-class assignments, such as reading assignments followed by quizzes, also can help teachers determine potential challenges students are facing so they can be addressed in class. When students gain basic knowledge outside class, deeper and more comprehensive instruction can be provided in class.

This was last updated in April 2017

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