Category archives for Assessment

Why Flipped Classrooms Fail Part 2

In Part 1 of this three part series, I propose one reason why I suspect some flipped classrooms fail while others succeed. [Go to Part 1: Why Flipped Classrooms Fail] Failure is a broad term and there are many ways a flipped classroom can fail.  The type of failure that causes the most tension for me is […]

Why Flipped Classrooms Fail

“I tried Peer Instruction and it didn’t work.”   As a champion of the popular flipped learning method developed by Eric Mazur, this phrase always hits me hard when I hear it from fellow educators. And I do hear it. Over the years, I’ve run into many different accounts of experiments in innovative teaching and flipped […]

How to flip your class with quizzes in 5 steps

Quizzes have long been used as a “stick” in education. Did you ever scramble at the warning from your own teachers during class,  “y’all better do your work…or else…I am going to give you a quiz!” Of course, most educators use quizzes for a more evolved reason. Rather than quiz as punishment, we use the mini-tests […]

3 ways to write effective questions

Ever wonder how to write Peer Instruction, clicker questions, or ConcepTests, or other item types that capture students attention in ways that help you share the wonderful world of the subject matter you are teaching? Check out my new post, “3 Tips for Teaching – Great Question Writing” on to get 3 ideas for writing effective questions […]

Can you use Peer Instruction with just one concept?

Can you use Peer Instruction with just one concept? A biochemistry professor from Taibah University in Saudi Arabia raised this question during a recent virtual Peer Instruction training Professor Mazur and I worked on for 30 faculty. This question, in various forms, comes up often among teachers trying to innovate in their classrooms across the globe. […]

Flipping your classroom to meet the common core and other standards

As the new school year commences, most K-12 teachers are faced with the reality of standards-based grading and the hurdle of having to cover ridiculous amounts of material in what feels like a nanosecond.   While standards-based grading is primarily a phenomena in the K-12 realm, college and university teachers are moving toward similar curricular approaches, […]

8 tips for transitioning to clickers when flipping your class with Peer Instruction

In a 2008 paper, physicist and former Mazur postdoctoral fellow, Nathaniel Lasry demonstrated a surprising result from a study on classroom response systems (CRS) in a Peer Instruction (PI) environment. Lasry’s result? Despite the rapid scaling of high-tech CRS, such as clickers, their use in his undergraduate physics classroom did not seem to influence learning outcomes over less-techy alternatives, such […]

The 2 most powerful flipped classroom tips I have learned so far

Won’t students skip my class if my lectures are available online? This is a question that comes up often in the world of higher education, where class attendance is usually not compulsory.  One fine day early Fall of 2012, I took this question with me on my walk from my office in the University of […]

A simple out-of-class assignment that could have big pay off in a flipped class

Peer Instruction Network member Claire, a K-12 English teacher from Michigan, worries that far too many of her students are falling through the cracks.  She is looking for ways to reach them.  Could student-generated questions be one possible low-threshold intervention?  This post digs into this question.  However, if you are looking for a quick protocol for student-generated questions, […]

How to evaluate students’ effort on out-of-class work in a flipped class

Flipped classrooms require students to take responsibility for their own learning outside of class.  Our favorite method for motivating students to engage in out-of-class work is Just-in-Time Teaching. The method is remarkably flexible: We implement JiTT as follows, but you can hack our approach–that is make it your own–in a number of ways. 4 Steps to Implementing […]

Quick start guide to flipping your classroom using screencasting or lecture videos

On Your Mark, Get Set, FLIP! Are you thinking about flipping your classroom? There are lots of different, interesting ways to flip a class. One popular, entry-level approach to flipped teaching is to deliver direct instruction (i.e. lectures) outside of class, using pre-recorded videos covering content. Instructors then spend class time on activities that students would […]

How to write effective questions for evaluating deep learning

“Are my students really learning anything?” When I ask teachers from all corners of the world about what worries them most about their teaching, this is by far the most popular response…they wonder, “Am I making any difference in my students’ learning lives? Have my students gotten anything out of my course that will help […]