Grounding the flipped classroom approach in the foundations of educational technology

  • Chung Kwan LoEmail author
Development Article


The flipped classroom approach is becoming increasingly popular. This instructional approach allows more in-class time to be spent on interactive learning activities, as the direct lecturing component is shifted outside the classroom through instructional videos. However, despite growing interest in the flipped classroom approach, no robust frameworks have been developed for the design or school/faculty-wide implementation of flipped classrooms. The aim of this article is to provide a foundation for the flipped classroom approach in Spector’s (Foundations of educational technology: integrative approaches and interdisciplinary perspectives, Routledge, New York, 2016) model of six pillars of educational technology. After reviewing previous discussion of the flipped classroom approach, each pillar (i.e., communication, interaction, environment, culture, instruction, and learning) is discussed in the context of flipped learning. Using Spector’s (2016) framework and drawing on relevant theories and empirical findings, 10 recommendations are made. These recommendations are particularly useful for the school/faculty-wide implementation of flipped classrooms. As the foundational framework proposed in this article is only preliminary, further studies (e.g., design-based research) are recommended to increase the robustness of the design framework and ultimately improve educational practices.


Flipped classroom Inverted classroom Instructional approach Educational technology 


Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The author declares that he has no conflict of interest.


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© Association for Educational Communications and Technology 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Division of Information and Technology Studies, Faculty of EducationThe University of Hong KongPok Fu LamHong Kong

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