A Flipped Classroom is an instructional strategy in which students acquire knowledge at home and practice it in class. This is the opposite of the common practice of teaching new material in class and assigning homework and projects to be completed at home. Flipped classrooms offer students greater freedom to learn at their own pace and more opportunities to engage in active learning than traditional classrooms. The foundation of a flipped classroom is the "flipped learning" component. Numerous studies have examined the impact of flipped learning in K-12 and higher education, and numerous benefits of the flipped classroom have been reported worldwide.
The term "flipped classroom" refers to a pedagogical model that reverses the traditional lecture and homework components. Figure 1 depicts the idea of a flipped classroom. The term "flipped learning," coined by the Flipped Learning Network in 2014, is a crucial component of the Flipped Classroom. Flipped Learning is “a pedagogical approach in which direct instruction moves from the group learning space to the individual learning space, and the resulting group space is transformed into a dynamic, interactive learning environment where the education guides students as they apply concepts and engage creatively in the subject matter” (Flipped Learning Network [FLN], 2014, Para.1).
Individual learning spaces at home provide students with their initial exposure to learning content. They are encouraged to interact with brief video content by taking notes, posing questions, or responding to simple questions embedded within the videos. Here, they have the option to pause, rewind, and rewatch the video content at their own pace in order to absorb it. The role of the teacher in this context is to create or curate short, interactive videos that are not of an advanced level. In the classroom's group learning space, students are engaged in quizzes, peer instruction, or group activities. Individually, they practice previously learned concepts and exercise higher order thinking skills. The role of the teacher in this situation is to reach each student and provide feedback, motivation, and timely assistance. Therefore, transferring direct instruction from the group learning space to the individual learning space frees up class time for more active learning.
Traditional Classroom vs Flipped Classroom
Difference between “Flipped Classroom” and “Flipped Learning”
"Flipped Classroom" and "Flipped Learning" have been used interchangeably, but there may be a significant distinction between the two concepts. Flipped learning is an essential component for enhancing the efficacy of flipped classroom. It comprises the four pillars F-L-I-P, which stand for flexible environment, learning culture, intentional content, and professional educator, respectively. These four pillars are fundamental to flipped learning (Voss & Kostka, 2019).
- Flexible Environment: It necessitates the reconfiguration of physical space based on the activities. It also refers to the selection of learning techniques and assessment methods, and the adaptability of time and pace.
- Learning Culture: This emphasizes the shift in emphasis from teacher to students. Students engage in in-depth exploration of concepts through activities, construct their own knowledge, and internalize their learning while teachers facilitate student engagement and scaffold in-class activities through differentiation and feedback.
- Intentional Content: In Flipped Learning, teachers create or curate learning materials to maximize classroom time for active learning. Educators determine the subject to be taught and the topics to be studied by students, which enhances conceptual comprehension and procedural fluency.
- Professional Educator: In Flipped Learning, a teacher must continuously observe individual and group activities, offer feedback, and evaluate students. Additionally, he must strengthen his practice to better reach children.
Evolution of Flipped Classrooms
Alison King (1993) coined the phrase "Guide on the Side" to replace "Sage on the Stage." Her work inspired active learning flipped classrooms, although she did not invent "flipped learning." In 1997, Harvard professor Eric Mazur created the "Peer Instruction" teaching method. He referred to "Pre-class reading assignments" that provided students with their initial exposure to information outside of class and aided in their assimilation within the classroom, allowing for more time to coach students. In 2000, researchers Lage, Platt, and Treglia came up with the term "Inverted Classroom" where by alternating classroom and outside activities, they demonstrated how to meet the needs of diverse learners without violating classroom limitations. Baker (2000) introduced the term "flip" for exchanging in-class and out-of-class activities.
Commonly, two Colorado high school teachers, Jonathan Bergmann and Aaron Sams, are credited with creating the current flipped classroom model. They initially recorded their live chemistry lectures in 2007 for students who missed class and used class time for group projects and personalised instruction (Bergmann and Sams, 2012). Realising the benefits of flipped learning, Clintondale High School in Michigan transformed to a fully flipped school in 2010 (Rosenberg, 2013) and in 2014, MEF University in Istanbul, Turkey opened as the first Flipped University in the world (Smith, 2018). To promote flipped learning globally, Jonathan Bergmann and Errol St. Clair Smith founded the Flipped Learning Global Initiative (FLGI) in 2016. Then, in November 2018, MEF University Istanbul hosted its Flipped Learning 3.0 Global Standards Summit and established "The Global Elements of Effective Flipped Learning Table" (GEEFL). Recently in 2020, a free resource on Rapid Transition to Online Learning was added by FLGI. Thus, with the passage of time, the concept of flipped classroom has progressed.
Numerous studies have been conducted to examine the impact of flipped learning in K-12 and higher education, as reported in Lo's (2020) study, and numerous benefits of the flipped classroom have been reported worldwide (Fulton, 2012). As a result of the significant global impact of flipped classrooms in schools and universities, the concept of flipped classroom has been incorporated into pre-service teacher education and in-service teacher professional development.
Baker, J. W. (2000). The classroom flip. Using web course management tools to become the guide by the side, 9-17.
Bergmann, J., & Sams, A. (2012). Flip your classroom: Reach every student in every class every day. International society for technology in education.
Flipped Learning Network. (2014, March 12). Definition of flipped learning. Retrieved from https://flippedlearning.org/definition-of-flipped-learning/
Fulton, K. P. (2012). 10 reasons to flip. Phi Delta Kappan, 94(2), 20-24.
King, A. (1993). From sage on the stage to guide on the side. College teaching, 41(1), 30-35.
Lage, M. J., Platt, G. J., & Treglia, M. (2000). Inverting the classroom: A gateway to creating an inclusive learning environment. The journal of economic education, 31(1), 30-43.
Lo, C. K. (2020). Systematic reviews on flipped learning in various education contexts. Systematic reviews in educational research, 129-143.
Mazur, E. (1997). Peer Instruction: A user’s manual. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.
Rosenberg, T. (2013). Turning Education Upside Down. The New York Times. Retrieved from https://archive.nytimes.com/opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/10/09/turning-education-upside-down/
Smith, E.C. (2018). Lessons from the rector of the first fully flipped learning university. Flipped Learning 3.0 Magazine.
Voss, E., & Kostka, I. (2019). Flipping academic English language learning: Experiences from an American university. Singapore. Springer Nature.