Wheeling Jesuit University dabbles in 'flipped learning' techniq - Beckley, Bluefield & Lewisburg News, Weather, Sports

Wheeling Jesuit University dabbles in 'flipped learning' technique

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With $172,000 in funding from the Benedum Foundation, pre-service teachers attending Wheeling Jesuit University’s Challenger Learning Center, CLC, will be given the first shot at a new learning concept called “flipped learning.”

E-TechTeach is a professional development workshop that educates pre-service and current teachers on how to flip their instruction and how to effectively integrate technology in their lessons. E-TechTeach and a team of expert educators collaboratively worked to develop two types of programs: a curriculum package for college instructors of pre-service teachers; and a professional development program for current educators designed to serve teachers of all grade levels and subject areas.

“The e-TechTeach program is authentic learning at its best. WJU students studied problem-based learning this semester, and this program reinforced that concept while also presenting incredible new skills for teaching with technology,” WJU Assistant Professor of Professional Education Jane Neuenschwander said.

“We’re very excited about starting this new program and expanding our education services to other schools and institutions of higher learning in the nation. The whole WJU Challenger Learning Center staff is appreciative of the Benedum Foundation for believing in this program,” Jackie Shia, Challenger Learning Center director, said.

Flipped learning is a method in which direct instruction is moved from the group learning space to the individual learning space, and the resulting group space is transformed into an interactive learning environment. The advantage to a flipped lesson is that teachers are able to maximize interaction with students, guiding them one-on-one as they apply concepts and engage with the subject matter. Through instruction, teachers will be prepared to not only implement technology effectively into their instruction, but also foster skill development among students that will prepare them for a technological environment.

“Developing this learning program is history making at WJU. In the past, our program development has been geared towards students, but now we’ll be focusing primarily on those in the education field,” Shia added.

According to Liz Meredith of WJU’s Challenger Learning Center, e-TechTeach is in its pilot stage.

“Once this gets rolling, we want to get feedback from those who participate. The WJU Challenger Learning Center hopes to continue this new program for many years,” Meredith said.

The CLC already has partnered with Wilkes College in Pennsylvania, Dubray Middle School in St. Peters, Mo., Robert Morris University in Moon Township, Pa. and Walsh University in North Canton, Ohio.