PIDP 3100 – A Trend in Adult Education: Flipped Classroom


Article resources:   Westerberg, C. (2011, December). The flipped class: Shedding light on the confusion, critique, and hype – THE DAILY RIFF – be smarter. About education. Retrieved January 11, 2016, from

Flipped Classroom A Flipped classroom is defined as ‘an instructional strategy and a type of blended learning that reverses the traditional educational arrangement by delivering instructional content, often online, outside of the classroom. It moves activities, including those that may have traditionally been considered homework, into the classroom. In a flipped classroom, students watch online lectures, collaborate in online discussions, or carry out research at home and engage in concepts in the classroom with the guidance of the instructor.’(Abeytsekera, 2014)

Traditionally, in a lecture, an instructor lectures to a class and delivers content to students.  There are required readings, but most information is passed on from instructor to student.  A flipped classroom asks learners to engage in a learning activity related to their subject matter.  This can take many forms such as watching a demonstration or problem solving video.  This activity allows the lecturer to explore topics more in depth and provide a more meaningful learning opportunity than in a ‘traditional’ setting.  By learning and at times, implementing the subject matter, learners come to class with some degree of basic subject understanding.  The lecture can build on this understand and focus on problem solving and exploring learner’s need for further exploration of the topic.

The flipped classroom allows teaching to take a learner-centered as opposed to a content-centered approach to teaching.  It allows for a self-directed adult learner to explore the subject matter and their needs before participating in learning activities.  It provides a safe learning environment for learners who may wish to repeat the learning activity at their leisure before classroom participation.  Those with the need to further explore and understand subject matters before a lecture can self-direct their learning as they wish.  This allows for deep learning through learning prior to lecture setting.  The teacher can then facilitate further learning by answering concerns and questions and providing resources as necessary.  Participants can share their experiences and thoughts in classroom setting, further assisting one another’s learning.  Classroom setting can be further utilized for exploration and implementation of learned materials to problems and situations.    I have used this approach in a classroom setting.  I enjoyed not having to lecture to students.  Preparation of adequate pre-lecture video’s and materials was time consuming and critical to achieving learning outcomes.  Short videos of 3-6 minutes have been found to be most effective in flipped classroom format (Rosenberg, 2013).  My only negative experience came from finding that some of my learners did not watch the prescribed videos.  Their lack of participation slowed down the learning of other colleagues.   I have addressed this problem by sending a personal email to all learners emphasizing the importance of our pre-class activities.   I have also implemented a short, graded i-clicker quiz at the start of lectures.    I now have an increased participation from learners.


Abeysekera, L., & Dawson, P. (2014). Motivation and cognitive load in the flipped classroom: Definition, rationale and a call for research. Higher Education Research & Development, 34(1), 1–14. doi:10.1080/07294360.2014.934336

Flipped classroom (2015). . In Wikipedia. Retrieved from

Merriam, S. B., & Bierema, L. L. (2013). Adult learning: Linking theory and practice (3rd ed.). San Francisco: John Wiley & Sons.

Morrison, D. (2013, December 13). Three social trends that will influence education in 2014. Retrieved January 11, 2016, from

Olitsky, N. H., & Cosgrove, S. B. (2016). The better blend? Flipping the principles of microeconomics classroom. International Review of Economics Education, 21, 1–11. doi:10.1016/j.iree.2015.10.004

Rosenberg, T. (2013, October 9). Turning education upside down. New York Times

Westerberg, C. (2011, December). The flipped class: Shedding light on the confusion, critique, and hype – THE DAILY RIFF – be smarter. About education. Retrieved January 11, 2016, from


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