Flipgrid: Adding Voice and Video to Online Discussions
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Discussions are an often-used pedagogical tool in online courses. Research has shown educational benefits of discussions for many students (Petress 2006; Weaver and Qi 2005) ranging from encouraging higher levels of thinking like critical-thinking and reflection (Rocca 2010; Zhang et al. 2007) to being useful for engaging minority students in course content and the classroom culture (Strambler and Weinstein 2010). Despite the benefits, online discussions that are textually-based may not be effective for all students. Online discussions can lack the personal connection that comes from seeing and hearing the person you are talking with. A tool we use—as are many other educators (see the hashtag #FlipgridFever on Twitter)—with students to foster this personal element during online discussions is Flipgrid (http://www.flipgrid.com/). With Flipgrid, students can have online discussions using short videos, which allows them to see and hear one another as they engage in discourse. In...
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