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Flipping Signal-Processing Instruction [SP Education]

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1 Author(s)
van Veen, B. ; Dept. of Electr. & Comput. Eng., Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI, USA

The conventional approach to university education, prevalent for hundreds of years, involves a lecture by the professor during the scheduled class period and students working on exercises outside of class. Flipping a classroom refers to reversing the traditional role of in- and out-of-class activities. This instructional approach is sometimes also called inverting a classroom. In a flipped paradigm, the students are introduced to topics and basic concepts using video lectures or other means during their time outside of the classroom and spend the scheduled class period working on exercises under the supervision of the instructor. Instead of being a "sage on the stage" the instructor now becomes a "guide on the side" [1]. The conventional paradigm treats the student as an empty container into which knowledge is poured, while the flipped paradigm treats the student as an active learner who reconstructs knowledge from information. The flipped classroom began to receive increasing attention in the early 2000s (e.g., [2] and [3]) and has become much more accessible to instructors recently with the advent of low-cost screencasting software, e.g., [4], and Web-based course and video management tools. My institution, the University of Wisconsin-Madison (UW-Madison), recently opened a new teaching facility in 2011 called WisCEL [5] that is specifically designed for interactive, student-centered approaches to teaching and is perfectly suited for the flipped classroom format.

Published in:

Signal Processing Magazine, IEEE  (Volume:30 ,  Issue: 6 )