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Flipping the Design Class Using Off-the-shelf Content: Can it work?

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2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


New Orleans, Louisiana

Publication Date

June 26, 2016

Start Date

June 26, 2016

End Date

June 29, 2016





Conference Session

Flipped Classrooms in Mechanical Engineering

Tagged Division

Mechanical Engineering

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Paper Authors


John-David S Yoder Ohio Northern University

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John-David Yoder is Professor and Chair of the mechanical engineering at Ohio Northern University, Ada, OH. He has previously served as Proposal Engineer and Proposal Engineering Supervisor at Grob System, Inc. and Software Engineer at Shaum Manufacturing, Inc. He has held a number of leadership and advisory positions in various entrepreneurial ventures. He is currently a KEEN (Kern Entrepreneurial Education Network) Fellow, and has served as a Faculty Fellow at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, CA and an Invited Professor at INRIA Rhone-Alpes, Monbonnot, France. Research interests include computer vision, mobile robotics, intelligent vehicles, entrepreneurship, and education.

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Flipping the Design Class using “Off-the-shelf” Content: Can it work?

The benefits and challenges of flipping classrooms have been demonstrated in many recent papers, including several presented in the Mechanical Engineering Division at ASEE Conference. This, combined with very negative reviews by students of the current textbook, convinced the author at a small private Midwest university (University X) to experiment with a partially-flipped classroom in the fall semester of 2013. In preparation for this, the author found a tremendous amount of already-developed video and text resources available online for no cost, and often very high quality. This led to the idea for this paper – can a flipped classroom be taught using only these types of resources?

This is now being done for the third time at University X this academic year, in a senior-level design course. The online content includes popular videos (such as TED talks), how-to guides (either video or text), and reference materials or case studies.

Initial student responses have been very positive, with some students noting they are actually enjoying an engineering class for the first time. Surveys regarding this approach, as well as student performance on common final exam questions, will be presented in the final paper. Preliminary findings indicate that in general this approach can work, but that there are certain content areas in which the available resources are very weak. A summary of resources used and student ratings of each will also be provided.

Yoder, J. S. (2016, June), Flipping the Design Class Using Off-the-shelf Content: Can it work? Paper presented at 2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, New Orleans, Louisiana. 10.18260/p.26926

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