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Running head: SOCIAL MEDIA IN FLIPPED CLASSROOMS

Social Media in Flipped Classrooms


Tammy Clayton: E-mail - tclayton@liberty.edu
Lori Payne: E-mail - lpayne@liberty.edu
Tim Mack: E-mail - tmack@liberty.edu
Amanda Yarbrough: E-mail: ayarbrough@liberty.edu
Liberty University
December 6, 2015

WIKI LITERATURE REVIEW

Abstract
The purpose of this literature review is to explore current literature related to the effects of social
media in flipped classroom settings. Educational technology provides enormous potential to
allow for alternatives to traditional classrooms. For example, industry trainers and educators use
Student-Centered, Open Learning Environments (SCOLE) to improve the learning experiences.
These environments, with technology integration allow students to creatively explore lessons by
gaining understanding through either researching content or subjects provided by the teacher,
instructor, or facilitator. Computers and other forms of electronic technology are fundamental to
society and are integral to communications, information seeking and sharing, collaboration, and
productivity. These technologies are powerful instructional tools, providing ideal learning
opportunities for students (Lemke, 2010). Social media in education provides methods through
which students and teachers engage in continuous interaction with the entire learning process.
This use of social media and student centered learning environment, such as flipped classrooms,
have allowed students to take full advantage of a collaborative learning environments. As such,
the positive aspects of embracing emerging technologies must be measured against the
practicality of using it according to particular socio-economic factors among or within schools.
This paper addresses both positive and negative implications of flipped classrooms, and in
particular, the utility of social media.
Key terms: Social media, flipped classroom, flipped learning, emerging technology, E-learning,
21st century learning, collaboration, hybrid course design

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Introduction
As technology has evolved so has its place in education. As educators became more
aware of the impact that technology has made in society, it became evident that it should be used
as a vehicle for education. The information age and a networked world are forcing educators to
rethink the educational experience. It has become very evident that the value-added in a
knowledge-based future will be a learning environment that develops and encourages the
ability to think and to learn independently and collaboratively (Garrison). Educational
technology provides enormous potential to allow for alternatives to traditional classrooms. In
addition, e-learning encompasses the skills educators are trying to instill as 21st century skills in
order for students to be successful in the world today. As such, 21st century learning and elearning go hand-in-hand to create the endless opportunities for the different learning
environments that technology can offer.
21st Century Learners and E-learning
As noted, technology has forced educators to look at the skills students will need in order
to be successful. In the 21st century, technology has a significant impact on everyday life. These
skills are a set of abilities that students need to develop in order to succeed in the information
age. The figure below shows all of the skills needed to be successful in the 21st century.
Twenty-first century learning is based on the premise of collaboration, oral and written
communication, critical thinking, digital citizenship, research and the use of technology. A case
study was done in Napa, CA at New Technology High School on 21st Century learning in schools
(Pearlman, 2006). In classrooms at New Technology High School in Napa, CA, the students
participate by writing journals online, doing research on the internet, meeting in groups to plan
and make their websites and their digital media presentations, and evaluating their peers for

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collaboration and presentation skill (Pearlman, 2006). These activities have names and purposes,
which follow the pattern of Project-Based Learning, designed to engage students in learning
deeply (Pearlman, 2006). These activities all actively engage the students in the key components
of 21st century skills. These components can be built into teachers curriculum very easily. In
order to learn collaboration, have students work in groups or teams. Students learn critical
thinking by working on complex problems, either individually or collectively. The
communication piece can be done by presentations (orally) and written assignments. Because
technology usage requires adherence to security in a school setting, students are encouraged to
be responsible citizens.
Implementing student-based and project-based learning into an already established
curriculum can be a challenging task. On an average day in a traditional classroom, students
typically work alone. Depending on the subject, they will also work on short non-complex
assignments that emphasize short-term content memorization or write for the teacher alone.
Including 21st century skills in classrooms can be done if students work on projects that are
designed to elicit collaboration, critical thinking, written communication, oral communication,
work ethic, and other critical skills, while simultaneously meeting state or national content
standards. (Pearlman, 2006). The case study showed that as a result of introducing project based
learning which incorporates all of the necessary skills of a 21st century learner, New Techs
students are articulate, powerful, self-directed, collaborators and entrepreneurs,.

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Visual from Alberta Education, Inspiring Action


Couros (2011).
To take it the 21st century learner movement a step further, incorporate an e-learning
platform for a blended learning environment. E-learning gives learners the ability to learn
anytime and anywhere with the use of technology. E-learning and traditional learning can coexist as a blended learning environment. Since learners learn in different ways and at different
paces, there are several different types of e-learning methods that can be utilized.

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For instance, asynchronous e-learning consists of self-paced courses which could use multimedia
tools and some form of interactivity such as discussion questions. This gives the students an
opportunity to engage with one another in an online environment. Synchronous e-learning
includes tools that enable teachers to teach over the Internet. This can be done through a number
of outlets such as virtual classrooms and audio and video conferencing. There are also a number
of virtual classrooms, blackboards and chat functions available. One, in particular, is the flipped
classroom.
Flipped Classrooms
The flipped classroom is a pedagogical model in which the typical lecture and homework
elements of a course are reversed. This model was initiated to improve face-to-face time with
students by leveraging technology. In its initial phases lectures were recorded and students were
given the opportunity to listen to these lectures and collaborate with their peers prior to gaining
better understanding through an instructor facilitated and student-lead discussion in class. The
accredited pioneers of this method were two science teachers from a small Colorado high school.
Jon Bergmann and Aaron Sams recorded lectures that were called pre-broadcast, which was later
called flipped learning (Noonoo, S. 2012). This was not a new concept at that time; however the
technology had evolved to the point of being able to support their ideas. The first test of this
method was actually in 2000, when professors from the University of Miami experimented with
a method that was called an inverted classroom. At the time of their article on inverted
classrooms, the technology was not in a place to support their method, and thus it faded until
2007. In 2007, Jon Bergmann and Aaron Sams looked for ways to maximize face-to-face time
with students, increase student motivation and better student-teacher relationships and began to
initiate this method of student-centered learning (Noonoo, 2012).

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Why Flipped Classrooms?


Flipped classrooms are a grassroots movement and therefore its not mandated from the
top down. While still in the developmental phases this model is shaped by the needs of the
students. Teachers are leading the charge of implementing flipped learning to meet the needs of
students on an individual basis. Classrooms are becoming more student-centered and teachers
have more time to engage students on an individual level. Students seem to be more actively
engaged in the learning process and teachers seem to have a greater impact on student
development.
Motivation is one of the key principles in the learning process. Motivation at its best is a
combination of things based on the individuals and circumstances. A students ability to learn
will be greatly enhanced in an atmosphere where they are motivated and feel comfortable to
express themselves. Very few individuals are self-motivated. Students need rewards to enhance
their desire to learn and explore new things. Self-motivation alone is not enough. Students that
have internal motivation still need to be praised and rewarded for their efforts for this to
continue. Learning is more effective when one can sense a feeling of satisfaction and
achievement. Teachers that are implementing flipped classrooms have more face-to-face time to
influence individuals and create circumstances to improve student motivation. Another
motivating factor is the use of technology and collaboration. Students today are more
technology savvy than any generation weve ever experienced. Teachers who are comfortable
capitalizing on technological advances are finding that students are more involved in the learning
process because of their comfort level with technology. Students are taking more ownership of
the learning process because their knowledge and use of technology is valued not only by their
teachers, but also by their peers. This ownership or belongingness is a humanistic need that not

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only motivates students but is also required for human development. The Hierarchy of Needs,
created by Maslow, argues human development is based off of a series of needs. Maslow was a
humanistic psychologist who believed people were controlled by internal motivational levels and
by external motivations (Maslow, 1971). Maslows theory suggested human potential was what
drove individual through life, indicating humans attempt to attain the top levels of their aptitude
(Maslow, 1971).
By incorporating and encouraging the use of technology and collaboration, teachers are
pushing students beyond the limits of their aptitude and forcing them to explore resources to
increase their knowledge base. This self-learning is based on the learners need to know and its
importance, control of learning techniques, prior knowledge and experiences, readiness to learn,
ability to learn and motivation to learn in order to effectively apply the constructivists beliefs into
learning. (Huang, 2002) Using this type instruction forces the student to be involved in learnercentered learning where they are responsible for managing their own learning process as
necessary in the constructivist design. Teachers involved in facilitating this type of instruction
become process leaders for educational development for the class and human development for
the individual. Computers and other forms of electronic technology have become fundamental to
society and integral to communications, information seeking and sharing, collaboration, and
productivity. These technologies can also be powerful instructional tools, providing ideal
learning opportunities for students (Lemke, 2010).
Open learning environments have been described using terms like informal learning, selfchoice learning, spontaneous learning, resource-based learning and self-directed learning.
Building on different assumptions, as well as associated theory and research, the foundations and
assumptions of student-centered learning provided interactive, complementary activities that

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enable individuals to address learning interest and needs, study multiple levels of complexity,
and deepen understanding (Hannafin, Land, 1997, p. 168). Although flipped learning has
proven to have several benefits, more research is required to establish it as a preferred learning
method. Initial research indicates the flipped learning with refinements has the potential to have
enormous impact on education.
Flipped Classroom Format
Social media facilitates the flipped classroom format. Teachers can have students watch
instructional lectures as videos available online, after which students can use their time in class
for practicing the concepts. According to Nwosisi, Ferreira, Rosenburg, and Walsh (2015),
emerging technologies continue to increase the development of hybrid courses. Within these
structures of hybrid and flipped classrooms, teachers assist students in learning, but the format
allows for learning to result from a student-centered approach. Outside of class, students are
expected to prepare for class by a completing a variety of assigned research-type work, including
podcasts, required reading, or videos. In anticipation that the students will come to class with
questions over the material, the instructor should be prepared to provide feedback over the
material, and use class time for learning activities.
Findings of a case study using flipped classroom model.
According to a study by Nwosisi et al. (2015), two instructors at The College of
Westchester, White Plains, New York, were awarded grants to assess the effectiveness of using a
flipped classroom model for their respective on-campuses courses: NET 125- Cisco
Networking Basics and GEN330- Adult Development in the Workplace (Nwosisi, Ferreira,
Rosenburg, &Walsh, 2015). The grants were awarded for these particular courses, based on the
class sizes, overall enrollment, and pass/fail rates (Nwosisi et al., 2015). The instructors

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redesigned their courses to alternate weekly content so that the course would follow a flipped
format every other week, and the instructors provided documentation to validate their work and
methods (Nwosisi et al., 2015). Technologies incorporated into the course designs for out-ofclass work included Moodle and Packet Tracer (Nwosisi et al., 2015).
The results of the study reveal both qualitative and quantitative analysis. The final grades
in each of the courses using the flipped classroom model were compared to the final grades in
each of the courses from the previously used course design. In each of the courses, the passing
grades improved. The average passing grades for NET-125 improved from 82.5% to 85.1%,
while the average passing grades for GEN-330 improved from 87% to 90.5% (Nwosisi et al.,
2015). In addition, students were asked to complete a questionnaire in which they were asked
for feedback on their flipped classroom experiences. While 94% of the students were favorable
with the flipped learning model, only about half of them responded that the flipped classroom
course required more work. In addition, 79% of the students were in favor of extending the
flipped classroom model to be used in other courses (Nwosisi et al., 2015).
From the results of this study, Nwosisi et al., (2015) suggested that using flipped
classroom alternately with traditional learning models helped students overall. The combination
allows student-centered learning, which provides students with freedom to build skills and to
collaborate in ways not possible in using a more structured curriculum design.
Advantages of Social Media
The use of social media for educational purposes is increasing. According to Faizi, Afia,
and Chiheb (2013), the availability of social networks such as Facebook, in addition to other
social media platforms such as blogs, Twitter, Wikis, YouTube, and iTunes have contributed to
the popularity of using social media in education. Both educators and students benefit from the

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extent to which social media enhances student/teacher interaction. Communication and


collaboration opportunities equate to increased awareness for student-to-teacher and for studentto-student efforts (Faizi, Affia, & Chiheb, 2013).
Enhanced Communication Opportunities
Communication is essential to fostering a productive learning environment. The more
closely teachers can observe and monitor students in the learning process, the greater the
potential for learning. According to Faizi et al. (2013), The more connected teachers are to their
students, the more likely they are able to help students learn quickly and at a high level (p. 51)
with more student/teacher interaction.
Enhanced Collaboration Opportunities
The use of social media enables students the ability to collaborate without the restraints of
physically attending meetings. According to Faizi et al. (2013), Within an online learning
community, collaboration refers to any instructional method in which students work together in
groups toward a common goal (p. 52). Collaboration is not limited to merely having students
work on individual components of a group project, but it also involves feedback, interaction,
analysis, and revision (Faizi et al., 2015).
Disadvantages of Social Media
Just as there are advantages to using social media in education, there are also
disadvantages. In the study by Alharbi (2015), both professors and students reported that each
party had unique problems. Some professors reported that it was difficult to keep up and manage
all the conversations, especially when students were posting simultaneously. As groups became
larger, it became harder to manage the discussion. Another problem that professors reported was
that many students plagiarized their posts from off of the Internet. Some reasons given by

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students were that they did not feel like they had anything valuable to add to the content on their
own, or they were afraid that the professor was going to judge them on their posts.
One of the biggest complaints by students against using social media in the flipped
classroom was that technological problems interfered with their ability to post to discussion
boards. While most of the time Internet connection was reliable, there were a few students who
consistently had connectivity issues.
Another issue that students have brought up was the fact that they were not comfortable
using social media in the flipped class. They felt that they were constantly being monitored and
ran more of a risk of offending someone in their posts. Also, because social media was being
used, students felt like they were under more pressure to respond to discussion questions
immediately. Many students felt they needed more time to respond in order to share their
opinion without criticizing or offending anyone (Alharbi, 2015).
As more and more schools as an institution, teachers, students and the general public use
social media as a means to communicate in the community, there are several legal concerns that
have to be addressed. One of the biggest problems that schools face when using social media is
that of free speech. There is a possibility that users of schools social media could have their right
to freedom of speech infringed upon if it is misused (Wang, 2013), which causes problems both
within and outside of the school doors.
Most problems with using social media in schools is on the side of individuals such as
teachers, students and parents. This raises several other legal questions that are still being fought
in courts today. Are teachers legally held responsible for things posted on their personal social
media pages just because they are friends with the school district site? Do teachers and students
have the ability to communicate privately through the use of the social media site and what

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problems can that cause? What happens if a parent posts something negative on the schools
site? Is it deleted, addressed or left for all to see? Does there have to be student and/or parent
permission before anything student related, including students photos or student-produced
materials, is posted (Wang, 2013)? As our society continues to use technology to communicate
and collaborate, these questions are going to have to be legally answered in order to protect the
stakeholders, which include administrators, teachers, parents, and most importantly, students.
Conclusion
Early findings support the use of this learning method it is important that these emerging
methods and technologies are used correctly. Flipped learning provides students with the ability
to establish and pursue specific individual learning goals, however if used incorrectly
instructional technology may actually hinder productivity by confusing or distracting students in
ways that are counterproductive to learning (Schacter, 1999). It is critical that teachers have the
knowledge, comfort, and vision for using instructional technology to create and implement
productive learning opportunities for their students (Russell, Bedell, ODwyer, & OConner,
2003). Additional limitations mentioned by researchers include the following: (a) According to
Kuykendall, Janvier, Kempton and Brown (2010), the novelty effect is the tendency for
performance to initially improve when technology is instituted, (b) most of the studies have been
limited to one teachers classroom, (c) methods of implementation have been introduced in
various manners, therefore the validity of the data is open for scrutiny.
Despite the limitations of the research, flipped learning and other Student-Centered, Open
Learning Environments have proven to be a way to engage individual learners and provide
learners with ways to be more involved in the learning process. Flipped learning has also
encouraged increased communication with teachers, peers in and out of the classroom. Active

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engagement and increased participation from students warrant a closer look at the use of this
method on a larger scale. Reaching the students individual needs is an extremely important
aspect of all learning models, if flipped learning provides an avenue to accomplish this goal it is
worth the time to research effective implementation. Teachers becoming more comfortable with
this method as well as other technologies will be the key to testing its effectiveness.

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References
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Couros, G (2011). The Principal of Change. Retrieved from:
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Faizi, R., El Afia, A., & Chiheb, R. (2013). Exploring the potential benefits of using
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50-53. doi:10.3991/ijep.v3i4.2836
Garrison, D. R., & Anderson, T. (2003). E-learning in the 21st century: A framework for
research and practice. London: Routledge Falmer
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Huang, H.M. (2002) Toward constructivism for adult learners in online learning
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Lemke, C. (2010). Innovation through technology. In J. Bellanca and R Brandt (Eds.), 21st
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url=http://go.galegroup.com.ezproxy.liberty.edu:2048/ps/i.do?id=GALE
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Final Exam Questions


Questions 1-3 are multiple choice.
1. Three characteristics of a 21st-century learner are:
a. Engaged thinker, ethical citizen, and self-paced.
b. Ethical citizen, engaged thinker, and entrepreneurial spirit.
c. Resourced-based, self-paced, and open-learning environment
d. Critical thinking,
2. Who are the two educators credited with first using a flipped learning model?
a. Garrison and Pearlman
b. Maslow and
c. Bergmann and Sams
d. Sams and Mason
3. SCOLE is an acronym for which of the following?
a. Student-Centered, Open Learning Environments
b. Student-Centered, Open Literacy Environments
c. Student-Collaborated, Open Learning Environments
d. Student-Collaborated, Open Literacy Environments
4. According to the study conducted at The College of Westchester in White Plains, New
York, how did the final grades of the students enrolled in the flipped classroom courses compare
to the final grades of students who had been enrolled in the same courses, which had used a
traditional course model?
5. What is a flipped classroom?