Flipped classroom approaches are being introduced in the ANU engineering degree to increase active learning and free up student time to participate in team projects. In this talk, I will share reflections on the experience of introducing self-study modules to a second-year Electronic Systems and Design course in Semester 1, 2020.

Self-study modules are a method of content delivery that allows students to study at their own pace, flexibly providing foundation knowledge skills. Self-study modules are a significant change from the previously delivered traditional face-face lecture for this course, and I embarked on this journey with some trepidation, knowing that the previous course format was popular with students. Creating the self-study modules involved writing, designing and producing a new set of videos around the existing curriculum, including setting up a studio with green screen, high-quality microphone, camera, and using OBS software to combine the video and PowerPoint format. The time students spend watching “lectures” was reduced from 48 hours to less than 20 hours, with 87 flipped videos covering the complete second-year electronics curriculum. The ‘flipped’ video format proved resilient during lockdown. The lecturer presented highly technical content with enthusiasm and confidence, along with a sense of humour, and the course delivered kept students engaged, resulting in very pleasing final results:

  • 100% of students reported that the lecturer treated them with respect.
  • 100% of students surveyed said the flipped videos were helpful to their learning, the course supported their learning, and the content was delivered clearly and effectively.
  • 100% of students agreed this course developed their ability to think.

The experience demonstrates that the lecturer is a critical ingredient, appearing in the videos and working through the slides, as a weatherperson would present the weather.

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