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Community-based, student-centered, technology-enhanced learning and teaching

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Hybrid Flipped Classroom

Posted Wednesday, April 30th, 2014 Tagged:

Special thanks to guest blogger Megan Tyler, Education Instructor & Off-Campus Elementary Education Advisor, for sharing about these exciting changes in the UTEP program!

Greenville College’s Undergraduate Teacher Education Partnership (UTEP) Program is getting a new design.

Beginning Fall 2014, Greenville College’s Undergraduate Teacher Education Partnership (UTEP) Program will be launching its new hybrid – flipped classroom design.  This new structure provides many benefits to students entering the field of teacher education.  Instructors provide high quality learning experiences that actively engage students and strongly supports each individual on their learning journey.  The flipped classroom approach is not a new concept, but has recently been gaining more attention in higher education.  The launching of the newly designed UTEP program brings great excitement and is highly anticipated!

What exactly is the flipped classroom, and what will it look like in the UTEP program?

Often, face-to-face class sessions include a variety of lectures, presentations, discussion of readings and topics, media resources, and activities that introduce or explore relevant course content.  Students then complete homework and activities independently that reinforce and expand upon the content explored in class.  The flipped classroom takes a different approach by reversing activities completed “in” and “out” of the class sessions.  The students participate in activities that require problem-solving and necessitates the most support from the instructor during the face-to-face class session.  Other tasks that do not require support from the instructor are completed in an online environment in preparation for the face-to-face class session.

When designing a flipped course, we must ask ourselves two key questions:

1)   When is it that my students need my support the most?

2)   What can my students handle fully on their own?

It’s crucial that these two questions remain in this particular order as instructors think about how to develop a flipped course or how to modify an existing face-to-face course into a flipped course.

Let’s explore these two key questions.

1)    When is it that my students need my support the most?

Of course the answer to this question varies depending up on the course content; however, there are some overall generalizations that can be made.  Students tend to need us most when they are grappling with tough questions, when they are problem-solving new ideas and possibilities, and when they are confused or lack confidence in a particular concept.  They need to see modeling of how to tackle a problem, they need clarification and an opportunity to receive specific feedback, they desire personal connections specific to their learning, and long for interaction that validates and encourages their thinking.  This kind of support is better provided in a face-to-face format where instructors can provide strategic instruction and give students the time and attention they deserve.

2)   What can my students handle fully on their own?

Students are fully capable of completing most introductory learning tasks independently, especially 21st century learners.  Lectures and presentations can easily be recorded using a variety of technology tools and be made accessible to students in the online course room.  Discussions of readings and relevant course topics can take place through online dialogue on discussion boards or blogs that are moderated by the instructor.  Videos and other media resources can easily be explored online by placing links to the content inside the online learning system.  While deadlines and specific parameters still exist, more flexibility and convenience exists for students.  The online tasks can be completed within a specific window of time and learners have continual access to the course materials for reference and review, even as the course progresses and other topics are explored.

The table below highlights some recommendations that help distinguish activities that are more suited for face-to-face sessions versus the online learning environment.  These examples specifically focus on teacher education courses that emphasize methodologies of teaching:

Activities in the Face-to-Face Sessions

Activities in the Online Learning Environment

Lesson Planning

Unit Design

Assessment Training & Analysis

Collaborative Hands-On Learning Activities

Examination of Student Artifacts

Practical Application of Instructional Content

Exploration of Manipulatives & Materials

Interacting in Discussion Boards/Blogs

Viewing of Lectures/Presentations

Exploration of Media

(images, videos, websites)

Quizzes

Journaling & Reflective Responses

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Using Rubrics to Teach and Evaluate Inquiry into Student Learning

Posted Tuesday, April 22nd, 2014 Tagged:

Special Guest Blog by Dr. Kathryn Taylor, Assistant Professor of Teacher Education

Note from Rhonda: I’d like to thank Dr. Taylor for sharing her expertise about the what, why, and how of rubrics. Many faculty who are experts in their field, but who are not formally trained as educators, have questions about rubrics. If this is you, the detail in this blog post is just the right amount of information to get you started!

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I haved changed how I view classroom technology.

Posted Wednesday, April 16th, 2014 Tagged:

A special guest blog by Kristyn Caldwell,
University Pathways Instructor

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