Flipped for the Sciences: Course Design


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On November 13, 2013, seminar leaders Maha Zewail Foote and Steven Neshyba presented Flipped for the Sciences, in which they shared why they became interested in “flipping” a classroom and introduced the “flipped” techniques they are using to engage students in the sciences. In this follow-up seminar, they offer some practical guidelines on what aspects of your course to flip, and how to flip them. They’ll share strategies for sequencing topics, identifying learning objectives, and motivating students in ways that maximize the benefit of the flipped format. They’ll talk about designing student-centered approaches, such as just-in-time development, that promote serendipitous learning. They’ll also talk about pedagogical experiments that didn’t work out as well as they had hoped. Whether you have already flipped a classroom, experimented with flipped techniques, or are uncertain about whether flipping is suitable for your courses, join the seminar leaders and other colleagues from the NITLE Network who are examining the value of this approach.

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Flipped for the Sciences: Course Design

  1. 1. Flipped for the Sciences: Course Design 9 3 15 F Li P Dr. Maha Zewail-Foote, Southwestern University Dr. Steven Neshyba, University of Puget Sound
  2. 2. How it’s done in our classes Before class Videos can be recorded lectures or narrated slides During class After class Grappling with complex problems, collaborative hands-on work, clickers Completing, reflecting , and preparing materials to be submitted
  3. 3. Step 1: What to flip?  Select a topic and learning goals
  4. 4. Step 2: Choose your tools  Choose the technology  Posting videos or other material  On-line quizzes  Electronically submit answers
  5. 5. Step 3: What to do in the classroom? Can still lecture  Active-learning activities  ◦ Worksheets ◦ Clicker questions
  6. 6. Example: Colligative properties  Step 1 : Learning goals ◦ Explain how the amount of solute added alters the vapor pressure, boiling point and freezing point
  7. 7. Example: Colligative properties  Step 2: Tools ◦ Create video ◦ On-line quiz
  8. 8. Exam: Colligative properties  Step 3: What to do in the classroom? ◦ Worksheet Describe the effect a solute has on vapor pressure at the molecular level. Modify the picture to demonstrate that change. Assume you add 1 mol sucrose or 1 mol of NaCl to water. Would the freezing point depression be the same? ◦ Clicker questions Which will have the highest boiling point? a) 0.200 m HOCH2CH2OH b) 0.0750 m NaI c) 0.125 m K3PO4 d) 0.200 m Ba(NO3)2 e) 0.12 m C2H6O2
  9. 9. Exam: Colligative properties  Step 3: What to do in the classroom? ◦ Worksheet Adapted from Chemistry, The Central Science, 10th edition Theodore L. Brown; H. Eugene LeMay, Jr.; and Bruce E. Bursten
  10. 10. Example: Decay kinetics  Step 1 : Learning goals ◦ Gain insight into connections between kinetics-related concepts: k, t1/2, and integrated rate laws ◦ Grow accustomed to the idea of theoretical modeling of experimental data ◦ Develop expertise in using a spreadsheet
  11. 11. Example: Decay kinetics Conventional approach: Students look at graphs, decide whether a reaction is 1st or 2nd order based on whether it’s a straight line … doesn’t lead to much intuition about the meaning of k. From http://textbook.sanand.net/wpcontent/uploads/2011/06/4_ 4.png
  12. 12. Example: Decay kinetics Flipped approach: Get students to construct graphs of experimental and modeled concentrations, vary k, and see what happens! 1.20E-02 1.00E-02 1st order Experiment 8.00E-03 2nd order 6.00E-03 [A] 4.00E-03 2.00E-03 0.00E+00 0 200 400 time (sec) 600 800
  13. 13. Example: Decay kinetics  Make a handout
  14. 14. Decay kinetics  Make a voice-over screen capture video showing how
  15. 15. Decay kinetics  Maybe a blackboard video of the theory
  16. 16. Decay kinetics  And ask for some kind of analysis
  17. 17. Example: Protein structure  Step 1 : Learning goals ◦ Learn to recognize amide planes within a polypeptide ◦ Learn to identify N- and C-termini ◦ Learn to identify residues within a polypeptide ◦ Develop skill in constructing molecules in SpartanTM (Wavefunction, Inc.)
  18. 18. Protein structure Conventional approach: Students look at images of polypeptides and proteins, try to identify sequence and geometrical relationships. Jakubowski. BC Online: 2C - Understanding Protein Conformation. at <http://employees.csbsju.edu/hjakubowski/classes/ch331/protstructur e/olunderstandconfo.html>
  19. 19. Protein structure Flipped approach: Get students to build polypeptides (on a computer) from residues, using handouts, lectures, and videos, and manipulate those images to learn about proteins From http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LXYunrarRg8
  20. 20. Lessons Learned Group work  Student participation  Student reflections  Individualized learning  Keep students on point with task  Time  Our learning curve 