SU-E-E-01: Revamping the Classroom for An Active Learning Environment




Removing traditional didactic lecture from session contact time provides the opportunity to keep the classroom interaction active, keeping both the students and instructor engaged.


Participant survey evaluation analysis for a non-traditional teaching environment during a technical graduate course, conducted over three course offerings (81 sessions, total) and 23 graduate medical physics student participants is offered. The modified course structure utilizes multiple alternate teaching methods, including the flipped classroom, online lecture offerings, peer teaching, problem based learning and guided discussions for each session. Viewing online lectures and textbook reading were prerequisites for class sessions, while scheduled open question time, guided interrogative sections, problem-based whiteboard activities and peer teaching were the focus of class designated contact time. Effectiveness and student perception/satisfaction were gauged by end of course, participant survey responses (both scaled questions and free-form response).


In general, students responded with positive feedback and indicated better understanding when the course was viewed as a whole. Granularity of understanding was further broken into the various components in broad categories which includes utilizing only the online lecture material, using only the interrogative classroom experience and the use of the text book as the sole source of learning material. Analysis of the survey results and a description of the classroom activities are presented.


The modified classroom environment is conducive to more active engagement between the students and the instructor, leading to better perceived information retention and overall satisfaction with the course offering.