The flipped classroom is a pedagogical model in which the typical lecture and homework elements of a course are reversed.

Students view informative video lectures in their own time before the class. In-class time is devoted to exercises, projects or discussions.

The video element is seen as the key ingredient in the flipped model. They are created by the instructor and posted online or are selected from an online resource repository.

The focus of a flipped classroom is to draw more attention to active learning, student engagements, hybrid course design and course podcasting. The value of this method is to make the most of class time where students can inquire about the content, test their skills and interact with one another in hands on activities. Class time allows instructors to function as coaches or advisors, encouraging students in individual inquiry and collaborative effort.

Many educators argue that the flipped classroom model is not new. Noting similarities with existing strategies where students are expected to prepare before class and engage in active learning while in class.

The key purpose of the flipped classroom is to engage students in active learning where there is a greater focus on students’ application of conceptual knowledge rather than factual recall (See Diagram 1).


Diagram 1: Learning opportunities of the flipped classroom (adapted from Gerstein)