Editor’s Note: The following post is the third part of a series on “The Flipped Classroom: A Course Redesign to Foster Learning and Engagement in a Health Professions School.” We asked a few of the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy faculty and student participants to share their perspectives on the experience. You can read the rest of the posts in the series here.
By Nastaran Gharkholonarehe, PharmD. Dr. Gharkholonarehe was a previous student of the Basic Pharmaceutics II course and the educational renaissance intern.
When Dr. Mumper approached me about an opportunity within the School to participate in an internship within the newest strategic initiative entitled “Educational Renaissance,” I was a rising third-year pharmacy student with a desire to engage in a different learning environment. I had come to experience a curriculum that was too heavily focused on instructor-delivered in-class lectures with minimal student participation and felt that this needed to change.
Dr. Mumper and I began to design a new teaching and delivery model for his Basic Pharmaceutics II course, specifically emphasizing higher-order learning activities in class. We offloaded the foundational content into small videos to watch outside of class and redesigned class time into a mixture of various exercises designed to encourage discussion and critical thinking and to measure comprehension.
I had envisioned that the newly designed class would be challenging for students due to the time commitment it required outside of class. Students would need to watch designated videos along with focused readings to prepare for an active learning class the following day. This format would require students to be prepared and motivated to engage in various class activities and discussions. With these changes, I also believed that students would more greatly enjoy and value their experience.
Throughout the course redesign, I was confident that this method would better prepare professional students to enter their professions by teaching students the skills that are necessary to be an independent health care professional who is ready to apply therapeutic knowledge in various practice settings.