Monday, 8 May 2017

Practical #EdTech: a flipped lecture example for #blended learning

In this blogpost I gladly share an actual flipped lecture that was used in a blended course. Here is an actual example  of  a flipped lecture approach used in an academic course.
A full description of the flipped lecture format and the actual document that is sent to the learners (students in this case) can be found here (Google doc).

In a previous presentation I talked about the flipped classroom overall, but in this case (described in the Google document) I have worked out a full example of a flipped lecture for blended learning use. The document also includes the reasons on why I included other teaching/learning methods as well. For this flipped lecture I combined an online action (engaging in MOOCs - 3 MOOCs were suggested - and sending me a screenshot of a personal interaction), a lecture (explaining additional concepts) and a fishbowl discussion (deepened reflection and debate between learners).

Teaching background and reason for Part 1 – prior to the lecture: mandatory learner actions.
By providing them an action to take prior to the course, the individual engagement becomes visible. Asking them to take part in MOOCs, pushes them to actively participate, which means they need to find their way in a MOOC platform. By asking all the learners to be involved, a baseline is set for the lecture, as you – as a professor/teacher – can assume they do understand the basis of what a MOOC is, what it takes to find and be active in a discussion forum, and what it takes to communicate. This will provide a more even starting point for all. In addition, you will also get an idea of who your learners are, and how digitally literate they are. It is amazing how much this simple action reveals and how this information can nurture your lecture. In this case the MOOCs that are chosen are also related to some part of Communicative Sciences to increase interest.

Teaching background and reason for Part 2 – the lecture in the format of a presentation focusing on EdTech concepts and communication
The lecture starts from a general overview on EdTech communication, from their some concepts and facts are provided that will be used as a point of discussion during the Fish bowl section. These concepts are introduced to allow the students to have some meta knowledge and become more critically aware of specific parts in EdTech based communication. By providing background to specific concepts which will re-emerge during the fishbowl session, you provide tools for those who are not that knowledgeable, which – from a teacher point of view – you will hope they pick up and share during the fishbowl discussion. But also try to get a rapport going with the learners in the group attending the lecture. It is important that you create a location that enables an open mind, and trusting communication.

Teaching background and reason for Part 3 – fishbowl discussion after the lecture

A fishbowl discussion forces each learner to take a stand on a particular question, the questions will normally range from simple to more complex, be related to the subject that has been discussed in the lecture, and provide moments of reflection, active debate and learning. You – as a teacher/professor – know it has worked when you hear the concepts you mentioned during the lecture being picked up and either agreed upon or rejected (all is well in a fishbowl discussion, the focus is on active reflection). In many cases you will also see that those who have already spoken, will keep actively debating during the rest of the fishbowl, as the reflective and debating parts of their minds have been activated. It is to your discretion and experience on whether you allow the debate to engage all, or stay focused only on those in the ‘speaking circle’. I vary, depending on time, group size and topic complexity.

And the slides of the lecture can be found here:

Picture from Ed Stein: