I finally found the time to break down the Unit 3 test in the comparison between my two general-level traditional classes and my one advanced level flipped classroom. In my mind, Unit 3 is a turning point in the semester since it involves the beginning of the more difficult concepts and it is composed primarily of material that was not covered at all during middle school physical science classes. With that being said, the advanced classes had less time to focus on the material in the unit and they had a more difficult test. The results are shown below:
- 1st period (n = 18): 64.5%
- 2nd period (n= 30): 59.8%
- weighted average of both general classes: 61.56%
- 3rd period flipped class (n= 17): 86.41%
Even accounting for differences in the test and the pre-test determined differences in ability, it is plain to see that the flipped class (3rd period) severely outperformed the traditional style classes. In talks with students in my flipped classes, they said that the extra amount of time spent in class working out examples and problems was a big help. They also felt that having the ability to go back and re-view the notes as many times as needed was very beneficial as well. With that said, I went back to see how many times some of the videos had been viewed and was astonished to see that the videos from unit 3 were viewed anywhere from 80 to over 200 times! Now, I am sure that these figures are slightly jaded by the fact that the videos are made public, but the number is far greater than I expected for a class of 18 students.
I am certainly pleased with the progress and the results that I am seeing with the flipped classroom approach. The next unit of study should be another good examination of the efficiency and value of this idea since we will have a big math component. My feeling is that more class time to practice the math (flipped) and less having to do it at home on their own, should generate greater test results.