Flipping the Economics Class in a Teacher Education Course

  • Micheal M. Van WykEmail author
Original research


This investigation explores student teachers’ perceptions of and performance using flipped classroom pedagogy (FCP) as a teaching approach in a teacher education course at an Open Distance eLearning university. An explanatory mixed methods design was used, and a pre-test and post-test online survey and Economics blog postings were employed to collect data for the study. Only postgraduate certificate of education and bachelor of education (B.Ed.: senior and further education and training phase) student teachers (n = 371) were purposively selected. It is reported that the FCP group outperformed the direct instruction group in the final examination scores. The results confirmed earlier studies that the FCP method enhanced the performance and perceptions of Economics students in an online open distance-learning environment in comparison with the direct instruction method. Furthermore, FCP encouraged an engaging atmosphere and fostered a collaborative, interactive synergy among student teachers. Finally, the findings revealed that the role of the teacher in the FCP design is crucial for promoting optimal learning experiences for student teachers. Several implications for using the FCP approach as a driver for an alternative assessment strategy at institutions of higher education, and for teacher education programmes in particular, emerged.


Flipped classroom pedagogy Open Distance eLearning university Explanatory mixed methods Student teachers Blog Economics 



The author is indebted to the critical reviewers for constructive feedback and positive comments. The author expresses his gratitude towards the National Research Foundation for grant funding (Grant No.: 113615) for the project. Acknowledgement is given to the Economics student teachers who voluntarily participated in this research study. The quality of the language revision work done by the Language Services directorate at Unisa is highly appreciated. Any opinions, findings and conclusions expressed in this paper are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the views of the department.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Curriculum and Instructional Studies, School for Teacher Education, College of EducationUniversity of South AfricaPretoriaSouth Africa

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