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SDUUP | Newsletter February 2021

Teaching with Flipped Learning Engaged Students During the Lockdown

Marit Carolin Clausen has used Flipped Learning to engage students during the lockdown in a course, where the practical teaching form was challenged by the limited possibilities of using a physical classroom. Marit’s way of teaching turned out to be very rewarding for the students, with many of them expressing their excitement in the course evaluation – some of them said they would prefer Marit’s model going forward instead of having every lesson in the course in a physical classroom.

Flipped Learning was essential when teaching with practical casework

With the partial lockdown of SDU in the fall semester, most teachers were forced to quickly find an alternative to physical teaching. For Marit, entirely online teaching was not an option in a course which contains a large amount of practical casework. Instead, she chose to use asynchronous video recordings in Flipped Learning:

From a pedagogical starting point, I chose to upload the mere theoretical parts of the course in asynchronous online slides, which I spoke over, and some exercises, which the students were to complete. In the physical face-to-face part of the course, we focused on doing case assignments, reflections, discussions and peer feedback. By consulting with research and pedagogical literature on Flipped Learning, I quickly found this teaching form to be a good fit with casework heavy courses.

Aligning expectations with the students provided a good starting point for the course

The limited time for planning and the new teaching form proved challenging to Marit and the students in the beginning of the course, but her teaching form quickly turned out to be a very rewarding and pedagogical way of teaching the course:

First of all, I was challenged by the fact that the entire situation was foreign to both me and the students. Therefore, it was important to me that the students were on board from the beginning, so I chose to do an exercise in aligning expectations where I explained the benefits of Flipped Learning. Afterwards, the students had a very positive outlook on the entire course.

The teaching form helped the students reach a higher level than before

Once the first challenges of the course were overcome, the teaching model turned out to be incredibly well suited for both qualifying the students to a higher degree than previous classes and also for motivating them during a difficult time in regard to teaching.

In my experience, throughout the course, the students got better at practical reflections than any of my previous classes have been. Because the students were able to gain an insight into the theoretical part of the lesson a couple of days before we met face to face, the knowledge had more time to sink in, which showed in their casework. Furthermore, the students enjoyed being able to see each other in the face to face part of the course and were excited to cooperate with each other in cases, discussions and reflections assignments.

The course was highly praised by the students

Fortunately, feedback from the students mirrored Marit’s own perception of the course, as the students were really pleased with the teaching form of the course:

In their feedback, the students really appreciated the teaching form. They almost all found it to be the best solution during the lockdown, as the technical challenges of online teaching did not take away time and focus from the course like it does in some other teaching models. I also asked them in the evaluation, whether they would prefer a similar teaching model in the future of the course instead of normal physical teaching. As it turns out, a lot of them preferred my method.

Advice from Marit

Based on her experience with the course, Marit has the following pieces of advice for teachers, who might find themselves in a situation similar to hers.

  • I would recommend that you split up the asynchronous part of the course into smaller videos, if you are considering video teaching as a part of Flipped Learning. This makes it easier for the students to take a break if they need to or watch the videos over a couple of days.

  • I highly recommend working with etivity plans in your teaching. In this way, you can make it clear to your students what the purpose of their preparation for the class is, what you expect of them and what they can expect of the teacher.

  • If your course includes any practical application, I definitely find that Flipped Learning can contribute with something special. Furthermore, if you are not able to conduct teaching face to face, you can easily incorporate Flipped Learning into synchronous online teaching.

  • As a final note, I would like to recommend SDUUP. I found that they were great at helping out when I had to start from scratch in something I had not tried before. I just wrote an email and quickly received a lot of useful materials on both etivity plans and the pedagogical challenges of going from entirely physical teaching to Flipped Learning
About the Teacher

Marit Carolin Clausen teaches Logopaedics at the Department of Langugage and Communication at the University of Southern Denmark.

Editing was completed: 23.02.2021