Thursday, February 20, 2014

"Scrambling the Classroom"

As the discourse of a “flipped” classroom begins to take root in the academy, some worry that we may be trying to replace one rigid approach with another. While the notion of shifting course “practice” (what was traditionally “homework”) into the classroom has a great deal of merit, a classroom model of “all practice, all the time” could become equally as rigid and stultifying as a pure lecture model. Pamela Barnett, writing in “Inside Higher Ed” argues instead for changing the discourse away from “flipping” (an exchange of one thing for another) to “scrambling” – a combination of practice, lecture, and feedback enabled through creative uses of available technologies that blur the lines between homework and classroom work. As Barnett suggests: “The scrambled classroom enables a variety of approaches for the face-to-face environment as well. Class meetings in this model could include short lectures which introduce new concepts or address misconceptions that were revealed by online assessment. Direct instruction can then be mixed with active engagement, giving students the opportunity to practice new skills like applying, evaluating or synthesizing course concepts. Ideally, students will have opportunities to collaborate with each other. Students can also take advantage of the instructor’s presence as a responsive facilitator, as they wrestle with new ideas or skills.”

Read the article "Let’s Scramble, Not Flip, The Classroom"

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