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Arts academics enlightened about the flipped classroom and employing AI tools in their teaching

The flipped classroom model and the groundbreaking role that Artificial Intelligence (AI) can play in revolutionising flipped classrooms were highlighted during the Faculty of Arts and Design's Learning and Teaching Conversations on 15 April.

In her presentation titled "From Flipped Classrooms to AI Transformation: The Future of Higher Education," Professor Linda van Ryneveld, Director of Comprehensive Online Education Services and Professor in Computer-Integrated Education at the University of Pretoria, discussed how the flipped classroom not only shifts the educator's role from lecturer to facilitator, but also gives students more control over their own learning.

A flipped classroom is a novel teaching technique that flips the conventional educational experience. It enables students to connect with lecturers and materials at their own pace, outside of class. This foundational knowledge lays the path for more engaging, hands-on learning in the classroom, where the true learning occurs.

Dr van Ryneveld, a well-known expert in e-learning, educational technology, instructional and curriculum design, and academic staff development, emphasised various advantages of flipped classrooms.

These, she noted, include higher-quality learning materials that are more dependable than students' own notes and properly curated; enhanced engagement; and improved teamwork, among other things. She elaborated on the disadvantages of this form of education, pointing out that resistance to change (the pay to be taught attitude) and a lack of infrastructure and connectivity impede its success.

Dr van Ryneveld also discussed useful AI tools that academics can utilize to reduce the pain of developing materials that their students must complete before coming to class, as well as assessment choices to guarantee that they arrive prepared. These include Edpuzzle and Magic School, which can be used to create interactive video lessons for students that academics can integrate directly into their institutions' Learning Management Systems (LMSs), track student progress, and develop lesson plans, design assignments, generate materials, and create newsletters, respectively.

The Faculty of Arts and Design's Learning and Teaching Conversations is a new initiative introduced to engage academics on best practices in the teaching and learning environment while also advancing the academic project. It is led by Dr Leatitia Orlandi, Assistant Dean: Faculty of Arts and Design, and Dr Tshisi Nesamvuni, Senior Curriculum Development Practitioner: Curriculum Development Support.

Dr Laetitia Orlandi, Dr Linda van Ryneveld, and Dr Tshisi Nesamvuni photographed at the Faculty of Arts and Design's second Learning and Teaching Conversations of the year.


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