I don’t just lecture for entire class periods — not without at least some student interaction and discussion, of course. I have lots of class activities and games that I use often. So, I’ve never been just a “sage on the stage,” I hope. But in my field — media studies and journalism — it makes little sense to me anymore to spend time in class reviewing basic facts about media industries or lecturing on grammatical concepts. I want my class time to be about collectively analyzing media texts, developing students’ individual analytic skills, examining case studies, collaborating on creative projects, and enjoying the intellectual engagement that comes out of all of those activities. While sometimes a mini-lecture might be useful for these activities, class time should be about deepening students’ comprehension of and ability to use what they have studied before arriving in class.
I know that for some journalism and media educators at the university level, this concept is already old news (ha, ha), so I’d love to know more about how others have fully adopted this strategy in their classes. While I know recorded lectures are a common component of flipped classrooms, I am not especially interested in recording my own lectures and requiring students to listen to them outside of class. (I would hate having to do that as a student.) I would prefer that they use high-quality online videos and texts, interactive online activities designed by me or others, the occasional video or podcast that I’d produce, and online quizzes prior to coming to class — whatever the appropriate mix for the topic of the day. (Here’s an article on the debate over the ideal implementation of the flipped classroom at Stanford; the many comments are interesting.)
I am concerned that some students will expect that class time is when they are fed information, rather than the time when they work on clarifying and applying their understanding of concepts. If you’ve flipped your classroom, how did you encourage student buy-in, especially as not all faculty have adopted this approach and still continue to be sages on stages?
Finally, I get a lot of visitors to this blog because I’ve posted in the past about using my iPad for teaching purposes. I think that a tablet is the great tool for the flipped classroom, as it allows the instructor and students to move around much more freely, to pass online material back and forth, and to immediately call up a variety of information and multimedia to share. I’m looking forward to taking advantage of those opportunities as my classes move more in this direction.