When Leslie Day flipped her “Gross Anatomy” classroom in 2014, she was startled by what she found.
Flipping the classroom is a pedagogical approach that has generated increased interest among educators in recent years. Students study basic concepts and definitions of terms on their own time and come to class prepared to discuss and apply what they’ve learned. “Students get to guide the class,” said Day, “and that helps increase their engagement in the material and the motivation to want to learn the material.”
“I started to see a complete difference in the students in how engaged in class they were,” said Day, an associate clinical professor in Northeastern’s Bouvé College of Health Sciences. “Their grades went up, and I enjoyed teaching even more than before.”
Day’s success inspired her to analyze the efficacy of flipping a classroom. She compared the grades of students in two versions of her “Gross Anatomy” course and found that students enrolled in the flipped version earned higher grades than students in her traditional classroom. The average grade in the flipped classroom was a B+, while the average grade in the traditional classroom was a B. Students in her flipped classroom also performed better on demanding analytical questions on the final exam.
She said that lower performing students experienced the greatest increase in grades in her flipped classroom.
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