User Generated Education

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The Flipped Classroom Model: A Full Picture

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Due to Khan Academy’s popularity, the idea of the flipped classroom has gained press and credibility within education circles. Briefly, the Flipped Classroom as described by Jonathan Martin is:

Flip your instruction so that students watch and listen to your lectures… for homework, and then use your precious class-time for what previously, often, was done in homework: tackling difficult problems, working in groups, researching, collaborating, crafting and creating. Classrooms become laboratories or studios, and yet content delivery is preserved. Flip your instruction so that students watch and listen to your lectures… for homework, and then use your precious class-time for what previously, often, was done in homework: tackling difficult problems, working in groups, researching, collaborating, crafting and creating. Classrooms become laboratories or studios, and yet content delivery is preserved (

A compiled resource page of the Flipped Classroom (with videos and links) can be found at

The advantage of the flipped classroom is that the content, often the theoretical/lecture-based component of the lesson, becomes more easily accessed and controlled by the learner. Cisco in a recent white paper, Video: How Interactivity and Rich Media Change Teaching and Learning, presents the benefits of video in the classroom:

  • Establishes dialogue and idea exchange between students, educators, and subject matter experts regardless of locations.
  • Lectures become homework and class time is used for collaborative student work, experiential exercises, debate, and lab work.
  • Extends access to scarce resources, such as specialized teachers and courses, to more students, allowing them to learn from the best sources and maintain access to challenging curriculum.
  • Enables students to access courses at higher-level institutions, allowing them to progress at their own pace.
  • Prepares students for a future as global citizens. Allows them to meet students and teachers from around the world to experience their culture, language, ideas, and shared experiences.
  • Allows students with multiple learning styles and abilities to learn at their own pace and through traditional models.

One of the major, evidenced-based advantages of the use of video is that learners have control over the media with the ability to review parts that are misunderstood, which need further reinforcement, and/or those parts that are of particular interest.  (Using technology to give students “control of their interactions” has a positive effect on student learning,)

It is important, though, not to be seduced by the messenger.  Sal Khan is very charismatic and has produced good videos to explain some complex mathematical concepts.  With the growth of open education resources via Youtube and Creative Commons, it is important to note that excellent video lectures have been and are freely/easily available.  The Flipped Classroom concept, though, was not developed and articulated by Khan but by teachers such as Karl Fisch and Jon Bergman/Aaron Sams.

The problem is that educators, as a group, know how to do and use the lecture.  When educators are asked to replace their in-class lectures with videotaped ones (either their own or others) that learners watch at home, educators may not know what to do with this now void in-class time.  Those who advocate for the flipped classroom state that class time can then be used for discourse and for providing hands-on, authentic learning experiences.   In a recent interview Khan stated. “If I was a teacher, this is exactly the type of class I’d want to teach, I don’t have to prepare in a traditional sense. But I do have to prepare for projects and all that, so I have to prepare for creative things” (Meet Sal Khan).  As Frank Noschese notes:

Sal Khan is not showing any examples about what students and teachers are doing beyond Khan Academy. The news stories are not showing the open-ended problems the kids should be engaging with after mastering the basics — instead they show kids sitting in front of laptops working drills and watching videos. The focus is on the wrong things. Khan Academy is just one tool in a teacher’s arsenal. (If it’s the only tool, that is a HUGE problem.)

In other words, the message being given is that teachers can do what they want to during class time. Now educators have time for engagement and interaction with the learners (#EdCampChicago presentation).

A major roadblock or barrier to the implementation of this model is that many educators do not know what to do within the classroom, what to do with that “whatever they want to do” time.  For educators, who are used to and use the didactic model, a framework is needed to assist them with the implementation of the Flipped Classroom.  In other words, the message to teachers to do what they want during classroom is not enough to make this transition.

In order to minimize the flavor of the month syndrome (recall character education, phonics movements, multicultural education, Reading First, powerpoints in the classroom), the use of video lectures needs to fall within a larger framework of learning activities – within more establish models of learning, providing a larger context for educator implementation.

What follows is an explanation of the Flipped Classroom Model, a model where the video lectures and vodcasts fall within a larger framework of learning activities. (Note: I am titling it the Flipped Classroom Model to get folks’ attention given the Flipped Classroom popularity right now.  It really is a cycle of learning model.)  It provides a sequence of learning activities based on the learning theories and instructional models of Experiential Learning Cycles – and Bernice McCarthy’s 4MAT Cycle of Instruction-

The Flipped Classroom Model

Experiential Engagement: The Activity

The cycle often begins with an experiential exercise.  This is an authentic, often hands-on learning activity that fully engages the student.   It is a concrete experience that calls for attention by most, if not all, the senses.  According to McCarthy, learning activities are designed that are immersive.  Learners “experience the now.”  They become hooked through personal connection to the experience and desire to create meaning for and about that experience (ala constructivist learning).

Students become interested in the topic because of the experience.  They have a desire to learn more.  This is in line with John Dewey’s thinking regarding experience and education. The nature of experiences is of fundamental importance and concern in education and training.  People learn experientially.  It is the teacher’s responsibility to structure and organize a series of experiences which positively influence each individual’s potential future experiences (

Examples of Experiential Engagement include Experiential Learning Activities, Science Experiments, Simulations, Games and use of the Arts.

Setting:  These activities are designed for in-class time and often occur in a group setting.  In a blended course, these are synchronous activities conducted during face-to-face instructional time.  In an online course, students could be asked to go to a community event, museum, . .  or the creative educator could provide some type of hands-on activity or simulation for students to complete during a real-time synchronous webinar session via Adobe Connect, Elluminate or through a 3D Learning experience such as Quest Atlantis

Conceptual Connections: The What

Learners are exposed to and learn concepts touched upon during Experiential Engagement.  They explore what the experts have to say about the topic.  Information is presented via video lecture, content-rich websites and simulations like PHET and/or online text/readings.  In the case of the flipped classroom as it is being currently discussed, this is the time in the learning cycle when the learners view content-rich videos.  This is where and when videos such as those archived by Khan Academy, Neo K-12, Teacher Tube, or other video services are used to help students learn the abstract concepts related to the topic being covered.

McCarthy reinforces that concepts should be presented in accessible form.  By providing learners with online resources and downloadable media, learners can control when and how the media is used.  This is the major value of flipping the classroom . . . content-based presentations are controlled by the learner as opposed to the lecturer as would be the case in a live, synchronous, didactic-driven environment.

In a user-generated learning environment, students could be asked to locate the videos, podcasts, and websites that support the content-focus of the lesson.  These media can then be shared with other students.

Part of this phase includes an online chat for asking and addressing questions about the content presented via the videos, podcasts, websites.  Through a “chat” area such as Etherpad or Google Docs, learners can ask questions with responses provided by co-learners and educators.  Videos could even be embedded into a Voicethread so students can post comments/reactions to the content.   Obviously, in a face-to-face setting, students can bring their questions into the real time environment.

Setting:  These materials are used by the learners in their own setting on their own time.  In other words, students have the opportunity to access and interact with these materials in a personalized manner.  They can view them in a learning setting that works for them (music, lighting, furniture, time of day) and can view/review information that they find particularly interesting or do not understand.   It is asynchronous learning and as such permits the learner to differentiate learning for him/herself. 

Meaning Making: The So What

Learners reflect on their understanding of what was discovered during the previous phases.  It is a phase of deep reflection on what was experienced during the first phase and what was learned via the experts during the second phase.

Learners can articulate and construct their understanding of the content or topic being covered through written blogs or verbal-based audio or video recordings.  Within the standard school system, this would be the phase when students are tested about their understanding of the content.  If this is the case, it is recommended that the tests target higher levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy – evaluation, applying, synthesizing.

Setting:  If possible, learners should be given the opportunity to reflect upon and make meaning of the content-related concepts within their own time schedule . . . both at a time when they feel ready to do so and taking the time they personally need for producing self-satisfactory work.

Demonstration and Application: The Now What

During this phase, learners get to demonstrate what they learned and apply the material in a way that makes sense to them. This goes beyond reflection and personal understanding in that learners have to create something that is individualized and extends beyond the lesson with applicability to the learners’ everyday lives.  This is in line with the highest level of learning within Bloom’s Revised Taxonomy of Learning – Creating – whereby the learner creates a new product or point of view. In essence, they become the storytellers of their learning (See Narratives in the 21st Century: Narratives in Search of Contexts).  A list of technology-enhanced ideas/options for the celebration of learning can be found at:

Setting:  This phase of the cycle is best when it occurs in a  a face-to-face, group setting within the classroom.  The reasons for recommending this type of synchronous learning are (1) the educator can guide the learner to the types of projects and tools best suited for him/her, and (2) an audience of peers and mentors increases motivation and provides opportunities for feedback.  Obviously, in an online course, students can work on their projects and present them to peers/educators during a synchronous, interactive online forum.

Here is a slideshow of former students’ Demonstration and Application Projects and Presentations.

Vodpod videos no longer available.


The Flipped Classroom offers a great use of technology – especially if it gets lecture out of the classrooms and into the hands and control of the learners.  As it is being discussed, it is part of a larger picture of teaching and learning.  The Flipped Classroom videos have a place in the models and cycles of learning proposed by educational psychologists and  instructional designers.  Providing educators with a full framework of how the Flipped Classroom can be used in their educational settings will increase its validity for educators and their administrators.

A Simple Example: Undergraduate Communications Course

Goal of Unit: Identify and analyze strategies for using language more effectively.

Experiential Engagement

Students participated in the Mine Field and Bridge-It experiential exercises.

Mine Field


Concept Exploration 

At home students reviewed related media and had associated text readings.  Here is an example of one of the videos students reviewed at home:

Personalization and Meaning Making

Students blogged about what they learned comparing the in-class experiential activity with their text readings and video viewings.

We broke into groups of three and were asked to create one side of a bridge within our group to connect to the others groups bridge.  We were in two separate rooms, with the same supplies and could only communicate with one member of the other group at a time, every five or so minutes.  I was the communicator for my group.   This was extremely hard trying to build the same thing as someone else in a totally different room.  As the project moved further along, people began to get frustrated and irritated for different reasons.  Even though it was successful as far as the construction, many of us left class upset and frustrated. In the readings I read “the process of constructing meaning is itself symbolic because we rely on words to think about what words and other things mean” (Wood, 2010, p. 100).  I think this is so true and it was evident in our project.  Each team was relying on the words of the other team to determine the explanations of the bridge construction.

. . . and from another student:

To clarify, without our ability to SEE the other group’s project, we had to solely depend on words. Words are discussed as never being self-evident or absolute (Woods, p. 100). With each person’s individual perspectives, we assign individual and unique meanings to words.  In that process, we unintentionally open the doors to misinterpretation.  As Woods describes, language defines, evaluates, organizes, allows hypothetical thought, and also allows self-reflection (Woods, p. 103-107). The key roles witnessed during this activity were the organization of perception, hypothetical thought, and evaluation. Mainly these were present between each group’s communicator to the other group, but they also trickled down to the communication within the groups as information was passed along; much like a chain of events. The power of verbal language is almost jarring.

Demonstration and Application

This phase had several components:

1)  Students demonstrated what they learned through in-class listening exercises.

2) Then learners selected listening skills they decided to practice in real life.  They reported on their results through blog entries.

When it comes to pseudo listening, it seems like for the most part there were just too many distractions or barriers going on. I found myself wanting to listen to people around me, but I couldn’t turn the internal dialog off. So throughout the week I tried to catch myself, and found that it wasn’t too hard. Most of this type of non-listening occurs when I’m on the phone (particularly with my parents) for a long period of time. I’m not very good at talking on the phone anyways because of the lack of eye-contact and my distractions caused by trying to multi-task. The best results in correction my pseudo listening were to go and sit in a quiet area (have a smoke) and literally sit on my free hand.  If my mind still wandered, I fought to catch myself and redirect my attention to who I was speaking with on the phone.

3)  Finally students integrated their course learning through a celebration of learning.  They created metaphors for the course content, and explained personal learning and future applications via these metaphors.

A Board Game

A Face Metaphor

. . . and Celebrating

Postscript: Learner-Educator roles change. At the conclusion of this course (June, 2011) a student stated, “You were so much more than a teacher to us.”

Final Note:   The title of my blog is User-Generated Education.  I have a goal of assisting with educational reform in that a learner-centric system of education evolves.  I believe that this cycle of learning is a natural way of learning and that educators can assist students in understanding this cycle so they can use it for their own personalized learning experiences.

Photo Image for Phase 3 Blog Picture: Blog Photo Image:

Written by Jackie Gerstein, Ed.D.

June 13, 2011 at 3:44 pm

90 Responses

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  1. […] ideas while they are fresh in my mind. Some of these ideas seem to overlap with the idea of the flipped classroom that I’ve seen referenced on twitter lately…the idea that you flip your classic […]

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  3. I would encourage you not to use the verbiage “Flipped Model.” IMHO, that makes it sound too much like the way we are already doing things. I think what you have here with the “cycle of learning” is the start of something much more important that just “flipping.” Flipping is a baby step, that won’t get us to where we want to get. It’s not a bad thing because it does provide some new capabilities, but it fits in the existing model and that’s where the problem is. Your cycle of learning diagram on the other hand, IMHO, appears to provide a much larger construct in developing a new model. I like your diagram and it has given me some ideas. Thanks!

    John Patten

    June 14, 2011 at 6:04 pm

    • Thanks for your response, John. I am 100% agreement with you about it being a cycle of learning. It is actually aa push-back against all of the press Khan is getting and the popularity of flipping the classroom. I want to get folks’ attention – hence the name of this model ; )

      Thanks for the feedback on the diagram – let me know about those ideas you have!

      Jackie Gerstein, Ed.D.

      June 14, 2011 at 10:28 pm

  4. Jackie

    the ‘flipped movement’ is in its early days and once the euphoria of getting kids to engage in homework has died away perhaps teachers will then realise the need to engage in the deeper consequences for their whole pedagogy. I have always been more comfortable with the term ‘flip-thinking’, arguing that once you have ‘flipped’ the homework then you need to start ‘thinking’ about your lesson. I notice many common features between my own methodology and the learning cycle you have presented, and I do like the diagram. As John Patton advocates I’m work on removing the reference to flipped classroom believing its reference is a distraction form a fuller method, the learning cycle.

    There currently seems to be a rush to claim the authorship of the method, curious when its little more than a web 2.0 version of homework that’s been around since the dawn of education, preparing for class. A colleague recently pointed out that when he was at boarding school they called it ‘prep’.

    Having flipped my classroom (IB Biology) I am of the opinion that the enthusiasm of students is as much to do with an enriched classroom experiences than anything intrinsic within the videos themselves. The New Zealand Professor of Education John Hattie said much the same of many of the Learning Theories such as ‘Multiple Intelligence’. Not a lot of empirical evidence that they work but lots of evidence that they enrich the classroom and so motivate students. Still with Hattie,he goes on to say that creating learning models, even though they may have no empirical evidence to back them up, does create and encourage a common teacher dialogue

    Thanks for the blog, and excellent references, I have enjoyed reading your work

    John BUrrell

    June 15, 2011 at 12:51 pm

    • I agree with your commentary – as I mentioned to John, this is my push back to all the press the Khan is getting (via Bill Gates and TED) that this is the “thing” that is going to revolutionize education. As you stated, “the enthusiasm of students is as much to do with an enriched classroom experiences than anything intrinsic within the videos themselves.” I obviously wholeheartedly agree. So, if the Flipped classroom gets the lectures out of and authentic experiences into the classroom, then I am all for it . . . and if I have to get folks attention by calling it the Flipped Model classroom, then I guess that’s what I have to do.

      That’s for the great feedback – I bet your students have a great time in your biology class.

      Jackie Gerstein, Ed.D.

      June 15, 2011 at 3:01 pm

    • John,
      Thanks for sharing some thought-provoking comments. I love the point made by your colleague: that flipping can also be called “prep.” Touche. I am in agreement that Hattie sums it up – these are all great techniques because they enrich the classroom and IMO, in the case of video flipping, in large part because the early adopters are probably already great teachers pushed to an even further high level of teaching by doing something new. That’s always a plus, no? A real strength of the flipped method is the availability of video resources – a weaker lecturer can outsource this part of the learning cycle.

      I do take a bit of exception to the general criticism of the lecture method – it’s important to know what we are talking about when we say lecture. Certainly among the most engaged classroom style is the Socratic method (when done well) and isn’t that a form of lecture? And I don’t think anyone with experience will argue that engineering education in the US system is anything but top-notch and that is generally done in what would be described as lecture based. However, the lectures are mostly oriented around problem solving, yet still lecture based.

      Even peer-teaching must be described as lecture based. I think the general situation is not changed much – what we all know is what we have known for years and years – very little learning comes from poor lectures. However, the criminal is the poor lecture, not the general method. As always, it is worth remembering that the best method is many methods.


      June 30, 2011 at 6:56 pm

      • Agreed on the last point. As you say its the poor lecture that’s the criminal, reminds me very much of work of Eric Mazur in confessions of a lecturer: The poor lecture is where “the information in the lecturers notes pass to the students notes without passing through the brain of either”, I liked that.

        I think those who are so strongly advocating the ‘flipped classroom’ need to stand back and recognise that this is just one technique for the teachers tool bag. Eventually the whole debate will blow over and hopefully what remains is a small but significant method that can cause change, but its not a paradigm shift as some are claiming. The main article here goes some way to helping point out this very point.

        John Burrell

        July 1, 2011 at 2:07 am

  5. I had a long comment but put the email in the wrong line and now it’s all gone.

    Basically this is a very sound approach to marketing your insights. Building on a known concept and using that knowledge to show what’s missing is a great way to reach people. Calling it something that nobody knows about outside of specialist circles almost ensures it will fall on deaf ears.

    I would strongly recommend you taking this awesome post and contacting key reporters covering this hot topic while they have an interest in doing followup stories. “What missing” is always a good followup topic.

    Best of luck!

    Clyde Smith

    June 15, 2011 at 8:49 pm

  6. I want to incorporate this into my teaching, but I have questions. Please bear with my 20th century mindset! What do you do if some of your students will not spend any time looking at the “lecture/video” on their own ? I don’t have Internet access in my classroom and cell phones are not allowed in our school. If I take a risk and let students use their phones in class to view the material they were supposed to see already, how do I make sure all 34 of my students are on task? Any advice would be welcome.

    Margaret Glanville

    June 15, 2011 at 11:22 pm

    • Margaret – good for you for having the desire to flip your classroom. At the core of this model is using face-to-face time for authentic learning experiences and having students learn the related theory at home. I have been using this model for years in both my undergraduate and graduate courses – prior to the ease of technology access. As I “demonstrated” with my classroom example, student engage in experiential activities during classes and view the lectures and readings at home. The accountability comes in the student reflections via their blogs . . . or need be with tests. I build in a criteria for their reflective blogs that states that their blog comments/reflections are supported by their at-home readings/lecture viewing. If students have technology access at home, you can ask students to view the content-related videos at home . . or have them read your lectures at home. Then you can use class time for related experiential exercises, group discussions, and/or individualized student projects. Let me know how it goes!

      Jackie Gerstein, Ed.D.

      June 19, 2011 at 8:42 pm

      • Jackie, I hear ya, but I think you are writing from experience at the college level. Margaret, I found this tidbit while searching and think it might help. I can’t say it will work, because I haven’t tried it. Build in parent involvement with a letter home to parents about your new initiative. If students are not participating, you could call home, send them to a colleague’s room to watch with a time limit, give assessments based on having seen the video, have them download the videos to personal devices (we have one to one, so that’s in our favor). If you don’t have internet, I’m not sure how this could work in your classroom, but don’t let that stop you from trying if you have the interst.

        Garry Marshall

        August 15, 2012 at 6:55 pm

  7. […] The Flipped Classroom Model Create a free edublog to get your own comment avatar (and more!) […]

  8. […] The Flipped Classroom: A full picture […]

  9. […] The Flipped Classroom Model: A Full Picture « User Generated Education […]

  10. […] 1. Using only video and online learning (the Flipped classroom) […]

  11. […] thinking it will be especially useful as I continue to explore the idea of flipping my classroom for some units of study next year. These links will be a great jumping-off point for me to begin to […]

  12. […] a bit more detail and I have been considering how useful this resource would be when attempting to FLIP YOUR CLASSROOM.  The Flipped Classroom is a concept that I personally will be piloting in session […]

  13. Whether flipped classroom is right or wrong, you have done a great service by laying the process out in such detail. I know this kind of post takes a lot of effort. Thank you for your commitment and your time.


    June 30, 2011 at 5:49 am

    • Thanks for your acknowledgement of my work, Rick. I don’t know either whether or not the Flipped Classroom is right or wrong – especially as it is being promoted, i.e., video lectures as the next educational revolution. . . . but as I stated, if it helps get experiential and interactive activities into the classroom and content into the hands of the students, then it is “worth” it.

      Jackie Gerstein, Ed.D.

      June 30, 2011 at 1:31 pm

      • For sure.

        I’ve been giving video “prelectures,” problem solutions, and added content by video for many years. No question it is a great addition to the teacher’s tool box. A huge bonus is that students love video – no doubt in part because it reduces their effort level. However, in the last year I’ve seen the benefits of the flipped classroom touted to excess on Twitter by well-meaning and talented K-12 teachers. Video offers a lot of pluses but used to exclusion of other techniques is a mistake at least in terms of college preparation and for work outside a student’s current level of learning. Whether college or the work environment, the learner will still be expected to pull up some written material and learn a task or concept from that written material. The utility of writing is one of the main reasons for education – if all task can be taught in pictures, education would not be as valuable as it is today. Well meaning teachers need to keep this truth in mind as they serve their students. A variety of approaches is still the best approach.

        And never forget – much of the push for the flipped classroom comes from commercial sources. For example, I love love love Camtasia and Jing. (I purchased the first Sony Vaio computer because it was supposed to make video production so much easier – ha! Not until Camtasia and then Jing did video become easy. Praise be to Techsmith.) But they have commerical interest in putting Camtasia on every teacher’s desk in the world – even if they do believe they are doing the right thing at the same time. We should keep these external interests and pressures in mind.


        June 30, 2011 at 6:37 pm

  14. […] The Flipped Classroom Model: A Full Picture […]

  15. Great site and fabulous resources. I would like to point out, though, that the “inverted classroom” model was actually first articulated by Lage and Platt (2000) (,8,16;journal,44,56;linkingpublicationresults,1:119930,1)

    Glenn Platt

    August 1, 2011 at 3:48 pm

  16. […] a Kinect for any classroom implementing podcasts. Using StagePresence and Kinect, the “flipped classroom model” can be taken to an entirely new […]

  17. Thanks for this. I have read a bit about the flipped classroom model. I think I would have had a much different school experience. I guess to that end I am curious. I went years before my learning dissabilities where diagnosed. I am just wondering what the experience has been as far as students with Dyslexia or Dsygraphia and the flipped classroom. Can anyone speak a bit more to that?


    August 29, 2011 at 5:04 pm

  18. Great post, very informative and fun to read.

    How would you overcome the reluctance/resistance of teachers to go public with their work? Videos available to parents would offer a lot of transparency and not every teacher would agree to do that.


    August 29, 2011 at 5:17 pm

    • Transparency and open source are two concepts/teaching practices I subscribe to in this century of learning. In other words, I believe that effective educators are more than willing to go public with their work to help the educational field evolve.

      Jackie Gerstein, Ed.D.

      September 5, 2011 at 12:07 am

  19. […] hype.  Fortunately Khan and his movement are spinning off numerous examples.  For example, over here we have a list of the many advantages of the “flipped model”, which is where students […]

  20. As a student, this sounds interesting. The idea of having fun in class, instead of falling asleep, and of being allowed to listen to the teacher’s lectures would be great. I’ve even thought that in some of my classes, where at least a quarter of the students record the lecture, it’d be nice if the teacher would just record it properly with a mic and allow us to listen to it again. I also like how it seems to work with all learning styles.

    However, discussion questions are dangerous. I have been in two classes that had “discussion” questions, which required us to discuss something, and yet the question did not lend it’s self to discussion nor did the topic have enough different answers to warrant a discussion. (Like, how do you deal with stress?) Moreover, I have seen many teachers try to use technology and fail. Miserably. A great teacher who cannot use technology would make it just as miserable as a bad teacher who can use technology in this setting.

    Those are my thoughts. Thanks for sharing, since I’m always looking into thoughts people have on the education while I am on my way to becoming a teacher. 🙂


    August 29, 2011 at 6:23 pm

  21. This was a really deep post. I’ve always wanted to become a teacher and fully realize, now more than ever before, how much work, dedication, careful planning, and absolute involvement that entails. It’s a welcome challenge. I love that, with the increase of time, more creative learning modules and more effective teaching methods are being implemented!

    Aun Aqui


    August 29, 2011 at 8:25 pm

  22. Really interesting angle on learning. Thanks for the (potential) ideas you have pointed out in your post. Great job!!!


    August 29, 2011 at 8:49 pm

  23. this is an amazing post – I’m debating on going to graduate school for education and this hit home for me.


    August 29, 2011 at 8:50 pm

  24. I’m glad to see that there’s somebody else who’s skeptical of Salman Khan and his supposed revolution in education. Like you, I’ve seen any number of “flavor of the month” trends in classroom education come and go, few if any of them accomplishing anything positive. My thoughts are here:


    August 30, 2011 at 3:29 pm

    • Alex
      The Sal Khan thing needs to be ignored there’s no depth to the thinking, certainly none that is comparable to the learning cycle modelled here by Jackie. In the USA a movement exists that claims authorship of the ‘flipped classroom’ which as you would expect from a group of teachers contains more that the ‘flip’ but also Mastery as a major part of their learning cycle. Even so their claim to authorship is something of a hype. The ‘flip’ needs to be treated as just a tool and the technology should not be leading the pedagogy. The main article of this page places the ‘flip’ into an appropriate context within a learning model which leaves me curious as to why you have both cited this page (in your blog) as a source of ‘hogwash’ and yet in your comment also applaud the skepticism. Perhaps I have mis-understood the intention of your blogs reference?

      John Burrell

      August 30, 2011 at 4:18 pm

  25. This might make education exciting. I have always thought that engaging the student is better than boring them. The cost of education is always seen when the student takes a national competency test to see how much has been learned. Good teachers have always been careful to stay focused and involved their students in activities. I would be careful with the flipped classroom. It may flip too much and then the test results may be lower. We are risk takers. We can’t afford to be. The old ways are not always the best. Boring students causes the test scores to go down also. Education is not something to be played, or toyed with, but it should be taken seriously. I was told to stand on my head if I needed to, but to engage the students in their learning. Maybe finally the system is willing to do that.


    August 30, 2011 at 3:45 pm

  26. I am not an educator, but I am a concerned parent who is worried that my child is getting lost in the school system and is not getting the education he should be getting. I absolutely love this concept. It makes total sense to me. How would you suggest that a parent could influence their school to move toward this direction?

    WI Snowflake

    September 3, 2011 at 7:01 pm

    • Sometimes, I think parents underestimate their power within schools and being the agents of change. Parents often feel there is a power differential with school officials being in charge. I recommend getting your voice heard – at parent associations, school board meetings, etc. You are the expert of your child and the systems that educate children need to build that into all of their operations.

      Jackie Gerstein, Ed.D.

      September 4, 2011 at 9:17 pm

  27. […] The Flipped Classroom Model: A Full Picture: Jackie Gerstein breaks the flipped classroom into 4 distinct phases and discusses them in this thorough article, providing a lot of resources for support and further exploration. Gerstein’s article has a strong emphasis on experiential, hands-on learning activities. One of the slides in an included SlideShare presentation states, “I believe my role is a tour guide of learning possibilities – providing students with a menu of these possibilties”. The author clearly feels that the flipped classroom lends itself to this approach. […]

  28. […] The Flipped Classroom Model: A Full Picture [7]: Jackie Gerstein breaks the flipped classroom into 4 distinct phases and discusses them in this thorough article, providing a lot of resources for support and further exploration. Gerstein’s article has a strong emphasis on experiential, hands-on learning activities. One of the slides in an included SlideShare presentation states, “I believe my role is a tour guide of learning possibilities – providing students with a menu of these possibilities”. The author clearly feels that the flipped classroom lends itself to this approach. […]

  29. Obviously a very thoroughly thought-out post. Some very interesting ideas, great examples, and great use of sources. I agree that the “flavor of the month” shouldn’t necessarily be used as a silver bullet to education. I do think some of the ideas are worth incorporating as long as the students will buy-in and are willing and able to access the materials at home.
    Thank you for this article and your contribution to the conversation about education!


    September 20, 2011 at 3:42 am

  30. […] Reading about a flipped classroom and the many success stories attributed to distance learning, it starts to sink in that this is the future of learning.  For a truly balanced and detailed discussion on Flipped Classrooms I recommend this article by Jackie Gerstein. […]

  31. […] I think a lot of us are own worst enemies.  I was chatting with a teacher the other day about the Flipped Classroom model and they remarked they had tried it, but they were not sure they liked it because they felt […]

  32. […] model where lectures happen as homework and the real work of learning happens in the classroom is a good place for Voicethread to work as students digest and discuss content at home. There’s even an Interesting Ways to […]

  33. Wonderful description – as I read this I said, “yes, this is what we are doing as we create our online courses!” I liked that I found it through the term flipped classrooms but I LOVE The Learning Cycle! Very much appreciate the terms Asynchronous and Syncronous being used! Wow.


    November 1, 2011 at 9:00 pm

  34. […] was very excited about the “flip model” of education. (For a bit more on this model see The Flipped Classroom Model: A Full Picture). More recently, I’ve been chatting to my colleague, George Kelly, more about this model as […]

  35. […] The Flipped Classroom Model – The Full Picture – And a full picture it is from a very informative and engaging blog entitled, “ UserGeneratedEducation”.  After reading this article any educator will walk away with the idea that the Flipped Classroom is more than just videos followed by paper work. Jackie Gerstein does a wonderful job of bringing the whole idea of the process together. The graphics do a wonderful job of showing how asynchronous and synchronous connections work together to involve both the individual and the group. Plan on having a little time to spend… which will be well worth it. […]

  36. […] I describe in The Flipped Classroom: The Full Picture, I believe, as Chris Dede does, that the problem with the flipped classroom is that the major focus […]

  37. We referred to the model during Scotland’s Colleges’ highly successful and well received Connected Educator: Flipping the Classroom conference on December 20. People were reassured by the model, and I was provided with some ‘flak avoidance’ by demonstrating the essential aspects of the different quadrants that go far beyond the simplistic model of videos replacing teaching. I think people were preparing themselves to hit me with that one!

    Colin Buchanan

    January 4, 2012 at 2:57 pm

    • Love hearing this, Colin – the Flipped Classroom ala having students watch videos at home should get flak, so I am thrilled that you got to demonstrate it can be much richer than that!

      Jackie Gerstein, Ed.D.

      January 4, 2012 at 3:07 pm

  38. Great article and it has inspired me to explore the method with my trainee teachers in the UK. However, one concern I have is the possible lack of flexibility. Once a session is planned, created and published there is little room for alterations. Any changes to the scheme of work could cause confusion amongst the learners.

    An example of this happened this week when one of our tutors was absent and a future guest speaker rearranged a date, causing the sessions to be altered on the scheme of work. As I had already created the material and published it to my learners they were a little disappointed that they had ‘wasted’ time working on the material when it wasn’t to be used until another session.

    Being new to this I was wondering if anyone else had experienced this and if there was any advice on how to plan for such issues?

    Richard Nelson

    February 2, 2012 at 9:23 am

    • Remember that distributed practice is better than one well-executed sequence over one or two days.
      I wouldn’t worry too much about ever getting a little out of sequence. If students are not able to reengage after a break of a day or two after beginning to learn about a topic, they need to change how they learn and we need to make better use of distributed practice.
      The idea here is to spread out the number of exposures to the topic over a long enough period of the time that the material not only becomes learned but becomes retained in long-term memory, lodged into our students’ mental frameworks.
      It is very liberating to have multiple shots at getting it right…both you and your students can make corrections on the way. Knowing this takes the pressure off of doing a perfect video or clearing up all of the misconceptions on the first try. Working students individually during class work is much more effective than trying to do it during a class discussion anyhow.
      Good luck with trying flipped teaching. I see great promise in its use as long as teachers remember to keep an effective learning cycle in mind when structuring the learning progression for any and all of their lessons.

      Eric Phelps

      March 13, 2012 at 11:57 am

  39. […] Link: Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:LikeBe the first to like this […]

  40. Thanks for the post as it clarifies most of the questions I have about the Flipping the Classroom Model.

    This is a reply regarding less to the content presented here. It is rather sharing an experience through using videos and asking for help.

    My students were given a Mac each in the beginning of the academic year. For the last two months, I and my colleauge have been ‘shooting’ videos through ShowMe , and using in the mathematics lessons. I know that this is not a true “flipping” experience, as we flipped the medium of lecturing rather than the teaching time. What we did was to divide the subject we had to teach in small chunks and shooted a video for each of them; namely, a bit lecturing, then solving a couple of examples and ask the students to solve 4-5 questions on their own. So instead of listening to what we lecture, opening their books and solving the questions we stated, they open their laptops and watch the videos and solve the questions in the video. It is exactly the change of medium, and nothing else.

    Yet, we both experience that, while they watch the video and solve questions, we have the time to walk around the students, check their work, answer their questions, and sometimes re-lecture the information mentioned in that particular video. This obviously increased our ability and allocated time to deal with students on one-to-one basis. What is more, students go on their own pace. We have evidence that some students scoring one-digit percentage in exams significantly scored better.

    But, looking back now, I think we have used the videos a bit too much. We need to blend the videos with other methods and activities. Our students are low-level-achievers in a vocational school; some even did not want to attend this school, but their parents made them so. Most of them try to cheat the homework, classwork, etc. Hence, I am now in search of how to use videos at home, too, and how to make sure they all watched the video. Thanks,


    April 1, 2012 at 8:06 am

    • I am a proponent of using face-to-face time for experiential and authentic activities. I am wondering, then, if the students can watch the videos at home and then use an online forum such as Edmodo to solve the math problems, interact with you and other class members, and ask questions. Then you can use class time for group discussion and hands-on activities to support the math concepts.

      Jackie Gerstein, Ed.D.

      April 1, 2012 at 1:37 pm

  41. […] The Flipped Classroom Model – The Full Picture – And a full picture it is from a very informative and engaging blog entitled, “ UserGeneratedEducation”.  After reading this article any educator will walk away with the idea that the Flipped Classroom is more than just videos followed by paper work. Jackie Gerstein does a wonderful job of bringing the whole idea of the process together. The graphics do a wonderful job of showing how asynchronous and synchronous connections work together to involve both the individual and the group. Plan on having a little time to spend… which will be well worth it. […]

  42. Your presentation offers a balanced view of flipped classrooms and brings into play the concern of authentic time with learners. As a result of your clarifications and numerous suggestions, I am contemplating the implementation of the cycle of teaching for my MC crew. Your philosophy of experiential, hands-on learning was very evident when you taught at ACS and you are so gifted in the integration of technology. Thank you for this fabulous contribution.


    April 20, 2012 at 9:14 am

    • Thank you so much for the kind feedback. Give it a try. What do you have to lose . . . and let me know how it goes.

      Jackie Gerstein, Ed.D.

      April 20, 2012 at 12:45 pm

  43. Jackie,
    May I use the images you have compiled here for a presentation in my school district? How should I cite your work?


    April 23, 2012 at 1:48 pm

  44. Jackie,

    I really enjoyed reading your blog post about flipping the classroom. I have just recently jumped into flipping my grade 6 math class and I love it! I’ve got to say that I am still adjusting on a daily basis and the students have been great with their flexibility. It makes me realize that it is often us, as teachers, who are the inflexible ones … and if we’d let go of our control more often, we could all see our students reaching heights that we would never have predicted. That’s what I’m definitely seeing through the flipped classroom model right now.

    I love the visual you provided for the learning process … and it applies so well to the stages of the flipped classroom. It provides good reminders that, in addition to the instructional videos and reflection pieces, we should continue to engage the students in active learning through activities, podcasts, etc. I have incorporated these things on occasion, but realize this is an area I need to work on improving.

    Thanks again!


    April 27, 2012 at 11:10 pm

    • Allison – I think your 6th graders would love more hands-on activities. I used to teach 3rd through 5th grade gifted and it was so much fun doing hands-on math activities. Let me know how it goes!

      Jackie Gerstein, Ed.D.

      April 28, 2012 at 12:16 am

      • I am planning a presentation to another group of teachers. Would I be able to use your graphics?


        April 28, 2012 at 1:18 am

      • Sure, Allison – just give me credit and reference my blog – thanks!

        Jackie Gerstein, Ed.D.

        April 28, 2012 at 1:27 pm

  45. Great post Jackie! 🙂

    Craig A. Cunningham

    May 10, 2012 at 4:30 pm

    • Thanks, Craig. I am writing a similar one, as we speak, about its use in blended and online higher education.

      Jackie Gerstein, Ed.D.

      May 10, 2012 at 4:33 pm

  46. I teach statistics at the college level. This semester I taught hybrid for the first time. At the same time, I flipped the classroom and put all lectures on video. It was a perfect fit. Next week, I am presenting at the Supplemental Instruction International Conference discussing the hybrid/flipped classroom and the role of the SI leader in it. Is it okay if I use some of your graphics? They describe what I have done perfecly.I will reference you and your blog. in my presentation.

    Nancy Burney

    May 24, 2012 at 2:14 pm

  47. Thanks so much for the tangy discussion! I don’t have time to read it all, but I intend to. My initial thought is that : we have to watch kids and see how it works. One model is not better than another. A child who is self-motivated and has attention skills can learn independently. Some may not be. New ideas are great. Let’s use them all as the children/students show us what they need!!

    Wendy Zacuto

    June 10, 2012 at 7:28 pm

    • Thanks, Wendy – this is just a framework based on an experiential model of learning – based on the works, thoughts of Dewey, Kolb and others. I discuss this in more recent blog posts.

      As a framework, it is just that, permitting a lot of flexibility for both teaching and learning style. I propose it as a way to get didactic/lecture based instruction out of being the core or center of learning because research indicates this is not the best style for almost all learners.

      Jackie Gerstein, Ed.D.

      June 10, 2012 at 7:52 pm

      • Jackie, we certainly do need to push the reset button on pedagogy, shaking the didactic/lecture based instruction off its pedestal!

        Wendy Zacuto

        June 10, 2012 at 8:42 pm

  48. Jackie..
    I would like to use your info graphic on the flipped classroom for the moodle course I am creating for teachers. How do i obtain permission for use.

    Ken Hakstol

    June 11, 2012 at 7:08 pm

  49. It’s nearly impossible to find educated people about this topic, however, you sound like you know what you’re talking about! Thanks


    June 26, 2012 at 10:16 pm

  50. […] it quite well and offers link to further information. Jackie Gerstein goes to a lot of trouble on her blog to clarify it and she offers a wealth of implementation support and explanation. Basically you set […]

  51. […] The Flipped Classroom Model – The Full Picture – And a full picture it is from a very informative and engaging blog entitled, “ UserGeneratedEducation”.  After reading this article any educator will walk away with the idea that the Flipped Classroom is more than just videos followed by paper work. Jackie Gerstein does a wonderful job of bringing the whole idea of the process together. The graphics do a wonderful job of showing how asynchronous and synchronous connections work together to involve both the individual and the group. Plan on having a little time to spend… which will be well worth it. […]

  52. This is the first I have heard of the flipped classroom. I can see all kinds of ideas for this. Even at the primary grades. What a great way to get parents involved. The homework videos could be the reading lesson. Parents could learn along with the child how reading is taught and learned. This would also be a great way to use inquiry based learning. Immersing the student in rich content. Asking them and helping them to develop higher order questions to extend their learning and going out into the community to apply their learning and research to real life and community issues. Amazing! I think that in time this could save school districts money as the need for brick and mortar classrooms may be reduced as scheduling of facilities and faculty could be coordinated. Perhaps students come to school everyother day and work at home and in the community the rest of the time Charter schools could start High Schools with a small population and grow with the students.

    Marlene Mills

    September 7, 2012 at 5:49 pm

  53. I like the blended learning model. Using videos for instruction is exciting and students really like the variety. But, having a real person in the room responding to the video content with you is important too. At the same time, it is wise to save some of the content for the student to view at home. This leaves the teacher with valuable instructional time to use for hands-on projects that are interactive and relevant. I guess balance is the key and that balance might be different for each group of learners? It seems like you’d need to pay close attention to the content of your lectures: even those should be engaging, relevant and even interactive (whenever possible). Students are probably more likely to take the time to listen to the “lectures” at home if they need to respond to the content in some way. Even an information treasure hunt to be completed as the lecture is watched will help the students engage with the content. This is an interesting use of video in the classroom as much of the classroom takes place inside the video. The classroom isn’t always in the same place. The use of video can allow a teacher to take a student just about anywhere. The possibilities are exciting! I would have never even considered how the sub-title system could be used for deaf education. The power of the audio along with the sub-titles could improve retention and comprehension. What we can do with this technology seems to have no end.


    October 9, 2012 at 7:58 pm

  54. Dr. Gerstein,

    First, thank you for your blog. I have read a number of your posts both for my own edification as a middle school/high school educator and also in the context of some courses I am taking on Instructional Design. I enjoy your insights and examples a good deal.

    Forgive my responding to your post quite some time after you initially made it, but I have a few questions for you regarding your take on the flipped classroom model. You encourage us not to be seduced by Kahn’s talks and to reach out beyond simply having students learn at home via video lecture. But you also encourage us to utilize video and technology as a way of presenting material where control is in the hands of the students as one piece of a larger model of presenting material to students dynamically. Are you against Kahn’s message because it glosses over the “important stuff”. Also, I believe that there are several schools in California which are using his model of learning on a large scale, specifically for teaching middle school math. Do you know about how any of those teachers are utilizing the additional time? Do you have any opinion on the effectiveness of their programming? (I don’t know, myself, exactly what they do in addition to showing the video lectures… I am just wondering if you have any more insight.)

    Also, are you familiar with the 5E model used by some science teachers (engage, explore, explain, elaborate, evaluate)? It may be dated at this point, but some of what you describe in terms of first activating curiosity by having students experience content, then challenging them to make meaning from it in unique ways reminds me of that particular model. I have been experimenting with “flipping” my classroom for one of my AP courses, and have been utilizing the free time to have students interact with real-life applications, models, labs, etc., and some of my approach is based on the 5E model, though I don’t formalize it or even articulate that approach to my students. I also noticed that my own approach to dynamically engaging students in the content is not nearly so structured as what you seem to be suggesting. How do you, as an instructional designer, set up your classroom and structure your time using this model? I hate to oversimplify what is obviously a complex process, but do you have any thoughts on how time should be allocated for your model of learning?

    Sorry, I realize that is a lot of questions. Thanks in advance for your response!


    Anna Sansone

    November 10, 2012 at 12:58 pm

  55. Thanks for laying the process out in such detail Jackie. Being new to teaching but investigating this process I was a little overwhelmed at where to start. All the examples seemed to correspond to maths or science and I was having trouble trying to translate it into social science (HSIE). Your information has certainly helped. Much appreciated


    November 28, 2012 at 3:01 am

  56. I agree that the flipped classroom is over-hyped and is in reality only a baby-step. Also that the key ingredients are meaningful activity and progression management. Activity need not be confined to the classroom – part of the problem with the flipped classroom is the assumption that digital content will be expositive and not interactive (and by “interactive” I do not – like Cisco – mean “watching a video”).

    So far so good. Where I part company with you is in believing that all this rich interactivity will be primarily user generated. If compelling, immersive digital games require industrial-scale production, then so do compelling classroom activities. The “what do we do now?” syndrome could be seen as a symptom of the lack of that supply chain.

    I have blogged along these lines at – see in particular “In the beginning was the conversation” (arguing for a similar take to your pedagogical cycle), “Education’s coming revolution”, and “What do we mean by content?”

    Interested in your comments, if you have time. Crispin.

    Crispin Weston

    May 20, 2013 at 3:19 pm

  57. As the author reiterates at the outset, the concept of the Flipped Classroom is invariably just a new handle for an approach to blended learning that has been discussed and described in academic journals for quite some time. However, it does serve to help build a stronger case for change in how schools, and teachers, view their role in the learning process and the essential role technology plays in that transition. Its also important to recognize Sal Khans’ effort to highlight not only the importance of developing highly effective and engaging video content as part of a comprehensive learning model but also the efficacy of a free, open learning resource available to anyone and everyone…. Powerful stuff.

    Marc Goudreau

    June 3, 2014 at 11:49 pm

  58. Great! Thanks for your documents, its been very helpful. Thanks again for sharing your information.

    verhuizen gouda

    January 25, 2015 at 7:42 am

  59. Hi Jackie, you have great material so thank you! I just wanted you to know that your hyperlink for Etherpad is taking us to a casino site, I googled it, so I found the one you were referencing- but I just wanted you to know! Thanks again for sharing!


    March 30, 2016 at 7:07 pm

    • thanks for letting me know!

      Jackie Gerstein, Ed.D.

      March 30, 2016 at 9:31 pm

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