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Evaluation of a Flipped Classroom in Mechanics of Materials

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2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Seattle, Washington

Publication Date

June 14, 2015

Start Date

June 14, 2015

End Date

June 17, 2015





Conference Session

Flipped Classrooms in Mechanics

Tagged Division


Page Count


Page Numbers

26.694.1 - 26.694.12



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Paper Authors


Luke S. Lee P.E. University of the Pacific

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Luke Lee is Associate Professor of Civil Engineering at the University of the Pacific, where he teaches courses in structural mechanics and structural design and conducts research in infrastructure renewal, structural health monitoring, and durability of composite materials.

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Rachelle Kisst Hackett University of the Pacific

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Rachelle Kisst Hackett is an Associate Professor in the Benerd School of Education at the University of the Pacific where she teaches research methodology and applied statistics courses and serves on numerous dissertation committees. She has also directed the evaluation research associated with several state- and federally-funded projects, especially those involving teacher professional development.

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Hector Estrada University of the Pacific

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Hector Estrada is currently Professor of Civil Engineering at University of the Pacific; a position he has held since August 2006. Prior to joining Pacific, Professor Estrada was chair of the Department of Civil and Architectural Engineering at Texas A&M University-Kingsville. His teaching interests include structural engineering and mechanics, the design of timber and steel structures, structural dynamics, and earthquake engineering. Professor Estrada received his B.S. (with honors), M.S., and Ph.D. in Civil Engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1993, 1994, and 1997, respectively.

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Evaluation of a Flipped Classroom in Mechanics of MaterialsRecent interest towards the implementation of flipped (or inverted) classroom models parallelsthe wide availability of technology and the shift from lecture-based teaching methods towardsstudent-centered teaching methods in undergraduate engineering education. The flippedclassroom involves two components, computer-based video instruction outside of the classroomand interactive learning activities inside the classroom. The intent is to create an active andengaging classroom experience that can be tailored to meet the needs of students possessing awide range of learning styles. This can potentially reduce attrition, improve knowledge retention,and enhance skill development in engineering.The goals of this study are to compare and contrast the effectiveness of a flipped classroom and atraditional lecture-based classroom in a first course in mechanics of materials. Two 5-weeksummer session courses in mechanics of materials were used to perform the study. The firstcourse was taught in a traditional lecture-based format where, during face-to-face meetings, newconcepts were introduced during the lecture, example problems were performed by the instructorand in groups by students; outside of class students solved problems as part of homeworkassignments. The second course was taught using a flipped classroom approach where face-to-face sessions were used for active learning techniques involving group discussions, problemsolving sessions, and demonstrations. Outside of class students were required to watchscreencast tutorials on YouTube and answer concept questions as well as complete additionalhomework problems.Assessment on the effectiveness of the flipped classroom is based on performance of pre andpost quiz scores, student survey feedback, and instructor observations. Students in the flippedclassroom (test group) performed better on pre quiz scores (mean of 0.12 versus 0.03) and postquiz scores (mean of 0.58 versus 0.38) as compared to the traditional classroom (control group).Quizzes were scored 0 or 1 without partial credit, where a score of 1 indicated a correctnumerical answer and correct units. Controlling for prior academic achievement and initiallevels of content-specific achievement, a multiple linear regression analysis shows that 8% of thevariability in post quiz scores may be attributed to the instructional delivery approach. Theresults indicate that there is evidence to suggest that participation in the flipped classroom resultsin better performance than participation in the traditional lecture-based classroom.

Lee, L. S., & Hackett, R. K., & Estrada, H. (2015, June), Evaluation of a Flipped Classroom in Mechanics of Materials Paper presented at 2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/p.24031

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