Jackie GersteinThis summer, Dr. Jackie Gerstein will  introduce two new courses to Powerful Learning Practice’s eCourse lineup.  Both courses will introduce and expand educators’ knowledge on the flipped classroom.  Both her five-week (Engage with The Flipped Classroom: The Full Picture) and ten-week courses (The Complete Guide for Implementing The Flipped Classroom: The Full Picture) are valuable for anyone that wants to better understand the strategies and tools used during the different phases of the flipped classroom learning cycle.

Jackie brings a wealth of experience and knowledge on the subject of flipped classrooms. Her recent blog, Flipped Classroom: The Full Picture for Higher Education has garnered a lot of traffic and praise since it was published this past May.  Jackie has been teaching face-to-face and online for several decades. Currently, she teaches Master’s level online courses in Educational Technology for Boise State, Argosy, American Intercontinental, and Western’s Governors’ Universities. Her background includes a strong focus on experiential and adventure learning, which she brings into her teaching.

In this interview, Jackie discusses her new flipped classroom eCourses and what participants can expect to experience in her five and ten-week courses.


1. What can you tell us about the flipped classroom? Why should 21st century educators be interested in this approach?

In its simplest terms, the flipped classroom is about viewing and/or listening to lectures at home during one own’s time which frees up face-to-face class time for experiential exercises, group discussion, and question and answer sessions.

Two noteworthy problems exist when thinking about using the flipped classroom.

a. If video lectures drive the instruction, it is just a repackaging of more traditional model of didactic learning,  It is not a new paradigm nor pedagogy of learning.

b. Educators need to be re-educated as to what to do with the class time that previously was used for their lectures.

Engage with The Flipped Classroom:  The Full Picture incorporates the use of videos and other online content in the flipped classroom fashion described by current proponents but also includes methods, strategies, and activities for the face-to-face and/or synchronous class time.  The tenets that drive The Experiential Flipped Classroom Model are:

  • The learners need to be personally connected to the topic.  Student engagement is the key to learning.  This is more likely to occur through engaging experiential activities.
  • Informal learning today is connected, instantaneous, connected, and personalized.  Students should have similar experiences in their more formal learning environments.
  • Almost all content-related knowledge can be found online through videos, podcasts, and online interactives, and is more often better conveyed through these media than by classroom teachers.
  • Lectures in any form, face-to-face, videos, transcribed, or podcasts, should support learning not drive it nor be central to it.
  • And from Doug Holton, “Lectures do still have a place and can be more effective if given in the right contexts, such as after (not before) students have explored something on their own (via a lab experience, simulation, game, field experience, analyzing cases, etc.) and developed their own questions and a ‘need to know.”
  • A menu of learning acquisition and demonstration options should be provided throughout the learning cycle.

The ten-week course, The Complete Guide for Implementing The Flipped Classroom: The Full Picture is designed to have participants dive in and develop their own lesson plans and units of study using the strategies and techniques learned in the first five weeks.  During the second five weeks, The Flipped Classroom model will be used as the framework for participants to develop their own flipped classroom learning activities.

To find out more how I view and use the Flipped Classroom, view my series of blog posts on the topic here.

2. What do you think is the biggest misconception about flipped classrooms?  

The biggest misconception about the flipped classroom is that it is about the videos.  Many discussions about the Flipped Classroom revolve around the videos and how to locate and/or develop them.  I find it ironic that many posts I have read about the Flipped Classroom stated this fact yet then went on to describe how to create one’s own instructional videos.  I take a different stance.  My discussions and posts about the flipped classroom revolve around the types of activities that can be used during the face-to-face and synchronous time with students with a list of viable academic-related video sharing site.

3. What’s your e-course teaching style? 

My e-course teaching style is the same as my face-to-face teaching style.  I believe I am an instructional facilitator.  As such, I believe I am a tour guide of learning possibilities.  I provide a lot of resources based on student/participant interests and then get out of the way for them to use and learn from them . . . being available for questions and feedback.  Participants share their reactions and ideas (both synchronously and asynchronously) as we develop into a community of learners.

4. Who should take this course?

This course is appropriate for any educator, curriculum specialist, technology integration specialist, or administrator who wants to learn the details, tools, strategies, and techniques for implementing The Flipped Classroom.

5. What will participants walk away with after taking this course? 

During the first five weeks, you gain expect to gain:

  • An understanding of how videos lectures fall within a larger framework of learning activities.
  • Strategies for using technology to support a full cycle of learning and address a full spectrum of learning activities and learning styles.
  • Ideas for using technology to support a broad range of student learning including reflection and demonstration of knowledge.

During the second five weeks, you can expect to develop a complete lesson plan for flipping your classroom, using not only videos for content dissemination, but also one that includes technology-enhanced, authentic learning activities.

Ready to learn more about flipped classrooms?  Sign up now for Jackie’s next five-week or ten-week eCourses about the Flipped Classroom!


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Christen Dodd

Christen is a Connected Learning Specialist for PLP. After earning her MEd. in Curriculum and Instruction at the University of Virginia, she began her career as a K-5 Computer Resource Teacher. She enjoyed collaborating with staff and creating technology lessons that engaged students, but caught “the bug” for presenting to educators on a national level. For eleven years, Christen trained educators both face-to-face and virtually with Verizon Thinkfinity. She also served as their Distance Learning Coordinator and Vice President of Professional Development. Christen has enjoyed working with Powerful Learning Practice since 2011 and continuing her work with educators, parents and students alike. Currently, she is also an instructional technology specialist at her children's JK-8 Catholic school.

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