The inverted class, the great surprise of the pandemic


The Teaching is the discipline that studies educational communication aimed knowledge. It is applicable to any educational stage, from Early Childhood Education to university training. Therefore, the didactic methodology is constituted by the techniques and ways of generating communication spaces that provide greater knowledge.

The study of didactic methodologies has been a fundamental field of pedagogy since its birth as a fundamental science of education, and continues to be so today. An example is the emergence of the inverted classroom or flipped classroom , based on the contributions of Jonathan Bergmann and Aaron Sams , secondary education teachers, in 2014.

The methodology consists, as these teachers explain , in investing what students usually do in the classroom. That is, if the common thing in the classroom is that different content and competencies associated with a discipline, subject or cross-cutting topics are taught in a session, and then the students perform some complementary task after the session, the flipped classroom methodology proposes that Students watch recorded videos, read, etc., prior to the session, and that it is in the session with the teacher where some task is carried out under their supervision.

Although the flipped classroom has traditionally been associated with the use of educational technology, it does not necessarily have to be conditioned to the use of said technology, but rather is based on the different distribution of the student’s teaching and learning times. In any case, the flipped classroom opens up different didactic possibilities for online teaching and, specifically, for the distribution of didactic resources and activities in synchronous and asynchronous teaching.

Applications during school closings

The pandemic situation, with the closure of schools and educational centers around the world, has been a challenge for teachers in many areas, one of the main ones being the didactic approach to teaching.

As a pedagogical challenge, it has also supposed possibilities of transformation in the field of Didactics, a priori insufficient if one attends to the evolution of this discipline in recent years, but without a doubt relevant and possibly sustainable in a post-pandemic stage.

The main transformation has been in the field of digitization and access to knowledge. And, in this area, the didactic methodologies that can be supported by technology have been very important. One of them is the flipped classroom.

Although we did not find conclusive research on the effectiveness and impact of the flipped classroom during the pandemic in the Spanish context, some studies carried out in different countries allow us to deduce the educational possibilities that this methodology has had for improving teaching in the face of the challenge of adapting to lockdowns and school closings.

These studies have been carried out mainly at the university stage. For example, one of them shows that the inclusion of the flipped classroom in online teaching has contributed to improving student learning, attention and formative assessment.

Contributes to improving motivation

On the other hand, as a didactic methodology that tries to promote the active participation of the student, the flipped classroom can contribute to improving motivation towards learning. Taking into account that motivation is one of the determining factors for learning, as well as a challenge for online teaching, it seems that the flipped classroom can play an important role in the teaching and training process in these times.

Undoubtedly, the pandemic has been a challenge for teachers of any educational stage and has been the object of study from the educational sciences. The technological reaction has been essential to promote access to knowledge and, therefore, a more inclusive education.

Although the negative impact of the pandemic on the most vulnerable students can be hypothesized with relative safety, we can also observe some notable advances, especially in the field of educational technology and teaching methodology that favors participation in online teaching, such as This is the case of the flipped classroom.

These advances are insufficient for the necessary renewal of Didactics, but they provide new teaching skills and ways of understanding teaching, likely to be useful and sustainable when the pandemic ends.

Author Bios: Pablo Rodriguez Herrero is Professor of the Department of Pedagogy at the Autonomous University of Madrid and Sandra Ruiz Ambit is Professor at the Faculty of Education at UNIR – International University of La Rioja