The Flipped Corporate Class?


Flipping the classroom has been a topic since Daniel Pink wrote about it in 2010. In Cyberspace & Internet Time that’s far away and long ago. Seems to be happening only in Grades K-12 and Higher Education. The very places that tend to be the slowest to change. If you’ve been off the planet for the last few years, here is a primer on flipping the classroom. I’ll add this before we get to the Big Question.

Here’s the latest piece I read from Dr. Nellie Deutsch:

“What is a flipped class? In a flipped class the teacher prepares the students, their parents, and other stakeholders for the lesson in advance. Teachers create assignments that motivate students to watch a video or connect with the content and try to learn on their own at the comfort of their homes. Learning on your own is not easy for most people. Many prefer to connect socially for learning. After the students are introduced to the material, they come to class ready to engage with the teacher and the other students on the content and beyond. Being introduced to the content in advance prepares the students for the class. The students and their parents (K-12) know what each lesson will be about. The teacher prepares the students for the classwork. The students can ask questions, engage with their class mates, and receive individualized instructions during class.

The rationale behind the flipped class is to engage learners in and out of the classroom. 

Benefits of the Flipped Class

There are many benefits to flipping the class:

  1. Less stress because know what to expect.
  2. Boost confidence because can prepare for the class in advance.
  3. Parents can get involved.
  4. Teachers can be better prepared.
  5. Everyone is on the same page.
  6. Raise interest and curiosity in students.
  7. Students can make up work if absent.
  8. Students learn about taking responsibility for learning
  9. Teachers can cater to student needs.
  10. Students can receive individual attention.
  11. Students can go at their own pace.
  12. Students can become independent learners.
  13. Teachers and students can focus on the process of learning.

Flipping Online Classes

I love teaching online because technology allows me to experiment with what I do in my face-to-face classes. I decided to flip a fully online class. I flipped Learn English Online (LEO) online course. Students can watch the recordings ahead of time in preparation for the face-to-face or the online (asynchronous and/or synchronous class). I invite other teachers to do the same. You can use WizIQ live class to create a video recording for your students and flip your face-to-face and/or a fully online class.” 

Here is a great story about flipping you class:

… And here are 5 things you might have wanted to know BEFORE you flip it:

Now to the Big Question: I cannot understand WHY in K-12 grades and colleges and universities classes are being flipped every week, and I have yet to hear about it happening in a corporate educational environment. Aside from getting parents involved, learning is learning at any age. A flipped class in a corporation makes even more sense, since everyone is under greater time constraints and learning has become more and more performance based  – what you know-how to do versus what you know. So being able to practice with others and with an ‘expert’ either in the room or on the screen would be a perfect fit. Instead we get endless PowerPoint slides,  sometimes homework, and usually no real chance to see if we know what we’re supposed to know-how to do.

Not a great use of employees or teachers time. Yet the model seems part of most companies learning DNA.

I’ve noticed that even MOOCs seem to be replicating the old ‘sage on the virtual stage’ for tens of thousands of students at a time. At least they can form up into Communities of Learning that can graduate into Communities of Practice.

We’ve been working on flipping a corporate class lately and looked for other examples. We came up empty handed. If anyone has heard of a company smart enough to use the flipped class model please let us know. And hats off to all the hardworking teachers in K-12 and Higher who are making this new and better model a reality.

One comment

  1. Denise · April 18, 2013

    Here at the Center for Government Excellence Riverside County, CA we have been considering flipping the corporate classroom and have been in discussion with one of our content vendors about partnering with them to build additional quality application exercises and experiences. Unfortunately, many corporate courses were not developed with homework. So the exercises that do exist are short and will require additonal development to ensure that that inclass application time is a rich experience. This is just my observation so far. If you hear of other corp. learning orgs. who are considering flipping please let me know.


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