1- It’s Flippin’ Fun!

23 Jun

Flipped_yellow_flopMEDMy name is Wendy Riggs, and I am an adjunct instructor at College of the Redwoods (CR), a two year community college in Eureka, California.  I teach Anatomy, Physiology and non-majors Biology to primarily pre-nursing students. I’ve been teaching at CR for almost five years and every semester I find that I am adding some new approach or technique to my course with the goal of improving student learning.  A year ago, when I received my teaching assignment for Fall 2012, I decided to “get crazy” and flip my class.

A flipped class takes place when students acquire content before coming to the “lecture” portion of a course, so that during the traditional lecture time, students engage in activities that promote deeper learning.  While there are many ways to flip a class, my version of “the flip” involves students watching pre-recorded video lectures before coming to class. This frees up lecture time for activities that challenge students to review, apply, and synthesize the content they’d covered in the video lectures.

Today, one year after deciding to plunge into the flipped world, I’ve flipped a total of 3 different courses and I’m delighted to report that I would be hard-pressed to ever go back to a traditional approach.  In this series of blog posts, I will talk about the process leading up to flipping a class (Riggs-Style), various issues I’ve had along the way, and then I will share my observations and experiences while flipping Human Anatomy (for the second time) this coming fall.

5 Responses to “1- It’s Flippin’ Fun!”

  1. voloughlin June 25, 2013 at 10:41 am #

    i’ve been wanting to do this with my human anatomy class too. i am looking forward to hearing about your experiences!

    • Wendy Riggs June 28, 2013 at 2:04 pm #

      Great! Feel free to make requests if there is something specific you are curious about. I’m pretty fired up about flipping–(in fact, I really wish I could do a back flip every time I talked about it…wouldn’t THAT be cool!?)

    • steelej2013 July 3, 2013 at 12:41 pm #

      I am also interested in changing the structure of my course. I teach about 250 students in two lecture sections (plus labs) and would be interested in how to “flip” the classroom when the classroom is really a lecture hall that seats 150 students. I am considering asking for a sabbatical leave to see flipped classrooms in action fall 2014.

      • Wendy Riggs July 5, 2013 at 1:37 pm #

        Wow–it would be amazing to spend time observing different flipped classrooms. There are so many ways to do it. Maybe YOU could post HAPS blog entries if you get to do that, so we could follow along with what you learn!

      • steelej2013 July 6, 2013 at 9:26 am #

        I just sent an e-mail to the List Serve to ask HAPS members if I could observe their classes. Obviously an application for sabbatical would require the names and institutions of those individuals I would observe. I would be happy to blog my experience.

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