What is a MOOC?

The topic of MOOCs (Massively Open Online Course) has been discussed in this blog in past posts. Despite the continued rise of the MOOC throughout 2013 and now into 2014, there are still some who have not heard of this educational trend. Alex Cusack of MOOCs.com has developed a solution to this problem.


Alex has developed an infographic completely outlining the basics of MOOCs in a visual format. The infographic does a great job of outlining the major players in the MOOC field and the reach of MOOCs. If you would to see the full infographic, select the link below:

MOOCs Infographic

If you have any questions about MOOCs or in general, please contact the Fisher ITS Helpdesk.

‘Four things I wish I’d known about the flipped classroom’

Robert Talbert, an educator who has been previously highlighted in this blog about his experience with the “Flipped Classroom,” has shared four key findings about his experience the he wished he would have known before his “flipping” experience.

Robert Talbert

Robert’s four key findings are:

  1. “The flipped classroom has many benefits for students – but, students will not always understand those benefits automatically” (The Chronicle, 2014).
  2. “The biggest problem students have with the flipped classroom has nothing to do with the content of the course, but rather it’s simple time and task management” (The Chronicle, 2014).
  3. “The flipped classroom entails significantly more work at the beginning than a traditional classroom” (The Chronicle, 2014).
  4. “The flipped classroom’s success depends on communication” (The Chronicle, 2014).

The full article including an analysis of the findings can be found on The Chronicle of Higher Education.

To learn more about the “Flipped Classroom,” please contact the Fisher ITS Helpdesk.


The Chronicle (2014, June). Four things I wish I’d known about the flipped classroom.
Retrieved from http://chronicle.com/blognetwork/castingoutnines/2014/06/05/four-things-i-wish-id-known-about-the-flipped-classroom/?cid=at&utm_source=at&utm_medium=en

Growth in Flipped Learning Infographic

The teaching strategy of having students learn content outside of the classroom so that classroom time is free for active learning has continued to gain popularity and is most commonly referred to as “Flipping” the classroom. Sophia and The Flipped Learning Network teamed up to create an infographic detailing the rapid growth of the “Flipped Classroom” concept.

Growth in Flipped

Among numerous facts and figures detailed, one of the most telling is told early in the graphic. In 2012, 73% of teachers had heard of the “Flipped Classroom” and in 2014 the percentage grew to 96% (Sophia, 2014). Likewise, in 2012 48% of teachers had tried a “Flipped” lesson, while in 2014 that percentage grew to 78% (Sophia, 2014).

The entire Infographic is available here.

To learn how to “Flip” your classroom, please contact the Fisher ITS Helpdesk.


Sophia (2014, May). Growth in Flipped Learning.

Retrieved from http://www.sophia.org/flipped-classroom-survey?utm_source=sophia&utm_medium=email&utm_content=5.20.14&utm_campaign=infographic


The University Center for the Advancement of Teaching (UCAT) at the Ohio State University “…seeks to advance teaching at Ohio State by promoting a university culture that puts students first by valuing a scholarly approach to teaching and learning, and focuses on faculty success by providing information, consultation, and events on teaching” (UCAT, 2014).


One way that UCAT advances teaching is by the dissemination of knowledge through their blog. The UCAT Blog highlights upcoming workshops, best practices in teaching, and reflections from OSU faculty on their teaching experience.


If you have any questions about best practices in teaching and learning, please contact the Fisher ITS Helpdesk.


UCAT Blog (2014, May). Blog Posts. Retrieved from http://ucat.osu.edu/blog

Active Learning Generates Positive Results

The Chronicle of Higher Education recently published an article highlighting the improvement active learning can have on student outcomes versus traditional lecture. In the study described, the incorporation of active learning techniques in the classroom led to a 12-point improvement over traditional lecture courses in terms of the number of students who passed the course (The Chronicle, 2014).

Ticker IMG

Read the full Chronicle summary

Read the full Report

To learn how active learning can be incorporated into your classroom, please contact the Fisher ITS Helpdesk.

The Chronicle (2014, May). Active Learning Is Found to Foster Higher Pass Rates in STEM Courses.
Retrieved from http://chronicle.com/blogs/ticker/active-learning-is-found-to-foster-higher-pass-rates-in-stem-courses/77475?cid=at&utm_source=at&utm_medium=en


In a recent post to The Chronicle of Higher Education, Sam Buemi who is an “e-learning coach and social-sciences instructor at Northcentral Technical College, in Wisconsin” outlines a strategy called “Microflipping” (The Chronicle, 2014). The “Flipped Classroom” strategy of teaching has gained momentum recently. In this method, students cover core concepts and material outside of the classroom and then work on active learning and group work in the classroom to reinforce concepts.


The task of “Flipping” a course can seem daunting, but it is important to remember that a “Flip” does not have to cover 100% of the course. In his article, Buemi introduces “Microflipping.”“Unlike the fully flipped approach where students are expected to come to class prepared, microflipping is designed to instruct both those students who have done the required assignments before class and those who have not” (The Chronicle, 2014).  Buemi goes on to say, “Microflipping complements traditional teaching by emphasizing that class engagement and critical thinking are a central priority in helping students learn” (The Chronicle, 2014).

This is a great strategy to complement what is already happening in a traditional classroom and to experiment with emerging trends before moving to them completely.

Full Article: Microflipping: a Modest Twist on the ‘Flipped’ Classroom

To learn more about the “Flipped Classroom,” please contact the Fisher ITS Helpdesk.


The Chronicle (2014, April). Microflipping: a Modest Twist on the ‘Flipped’ Classroom.

Retrieved from http://chronicle.com/article/Microflipping-a-Modest-Twist/145951/?cid=at&utm_source=at&utm_medium=en

Boost Persistence with Encouragement

Engage: Engaging Students in Engineering recently published an article, “Boost Persistence with Encouragement,” detailing the importance of faculty feedback towards student retention. “Since faculty comments can make or break a student’s self-perception, a brief encouraging word from you can make the difference between a student switching majors or persevering” (Engage, 2014).

Engage Logo

In the article, Engage highlights two areas of engagement:

  1. Encourage the class as a whole
  2. Encourage an individual student

In both cases, encouragement is seen as a tool to incorporate with evaluation.

Full Article: Boost Persistence with Encourage

To learn more about encouragement strategies in the classroom, please contact the Fisher ITS Helpdesk.

Learning Objectives in a Flipped Classroom

Robert Talbert recently “flipped” a calculus course and found that instructionally sound learning objectives are key, “A clear set of learning objectives is at the heart of any successful learning experience, and it’s an essential ingredient for self-regulated learning since self-regulating learners have a clear set of criteria against which to judge their learning progress” (The Chronicle, 2014).

Robert Talbert

In Robert’s article he highlights a three step process to create instructionally sound learning objectives for a “flipped” course, however these principals can be beneficial in any instructional situation.

The Article: “Creating learning objectives, flipped classroom style”

Robert’s Profile

To learn more about creating instructionally sound learning objectives or how they can be used in your situation, please contact the Fisher ITS Helpdesk.


The Chronicle (2014, March). Creating learning objectives, flipped classroom style.

Retrieved from http://chronicle.com/blognetwork/castingoutnines/2014/03/05/creating-learning-objectives-flipped-classroom-style/?cid=at&utm_source=at&utm_medium=en

Mendeley (2014, March). Robert Talbert.

Retrieved from http://www.mendeley.com/profiles/robert-talbert/

Periodic Table of Instructional Design

Instructional Design is the systematic design of instruction. Although Instructional Design can be used as a powerful development tool in education, it can be overwhelming. The “Periodic Table of Instructional Design” attempts to alleviate confusion by categorizing and explaining stages of development.

Periodic Table of Instructional Design

The table uses the ADDIE Model of Instructional Design (Analysis, Design, Development, Evaluation, and Implementation) to create categories. In these categories different aspects of each design phase are listed and explained. To see the full table, please select the link below:

Periodic Table of Instructional Design

To learn how Instructional Design can be applied in your situation, please contact the Fisher ITS Helpdesk.

NMC Horizon Report: 2014 Higher Education Edition

For the past 11 years, The New Media Consortium (NMC) in collaboration with EDUCAUSE has published the Horizon Report. The Horizon Report identifies and describes “…emerging technologies likely to have an impact on learning, teaching, and creative inquiry in education…”

2014 Horizon Report

This year’s report highlights six emerging trends and predicts when these trends will create change, in the next 1-2 years, 3-5 years, or 5 plus years. There are two trends in each group. The trends that are identified as having significant impact in the next 1-2 years are “Online, Hybrid, and Collaborative Learning” and “Social Media Use in Learning.” To read more about these emerging trends or to read the entire report, please select the links below.

NMC Horizon Report: 2014 Higher Education Edition: Preview

NMC Horizon Report: 2014 Higher Education Edition: Full Report

To discuss how these emerging trends may be incorporated into your situation, please contact the Fisher ITS Helpdesk.


The New Media Consortium (2014,Feb.). New Horizons Report > 2014 Higher Education Edition. Retrieved from http://www.nmc.org/publications/2014-horizon-report-higher-ed