Student learning and perceptions in a flipped linear algebra course

Betty Love, Angie Hodge, Neal Grandgenett, Andrew W. Swift

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

281 Scopus citations


The traditional lecture style of teaching has long been the norm in college science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) courses, but an innovative teaching model, facilitated by recent advances in technology, is gaining popularity across college campuses. This new model inverts or 'flips' the usual classroom paradigm, in that students learn initial course concepts outside of the classroom, while class time is reserved for more active problem-based learning and practice activities. While the flipped classroom model shows promise for improving STEM learning and increasing student interest in STEM fields, discussions to date of the model and its impact are more anecdotal than data driven - very little research has been undertaken to rigorously assess the potential effects on student learning that can result from the flipped classroom environment. This study involved 55 students in 2 sections of an applied linear algebra course, using the traditional lecture format in one section and the flipped classroom model in another. In the latter, students were expected to prepare for the class in some way, such as watching screencasts prepared by the instructor, or reading the textbook or the instructor's notes. Student content understanding and course perceptions were examined. Content understanding was measured by the performance on course exams, and students in the flipped classroom environment had a more significant increase between the sequential exams compared to the students in the traditional lecture section, while performing similarly in the final exam. Course perceptions were represented by an end-of-semester survey that indicated that the flipped classroom students were very positive about their experience in the course, and particularly appreciated the student collaboration and instructional video components.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)317-324
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Mathematical Education in Science and Technology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Apr 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • flipped classroom
  • inquiry-based learning
  • linear algebra
  • student perceptions of instruction
  • teaching with technology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mathematics (miscellaneous)
  • Education
  • Applied Mathematics


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