VU innovation Prize 2016

VU Innovation Prize
Marjolein Zweekhorst wins with her team the VU innovation prize 2016

More and more studies have to do with a diverse influx of students and thus a different background in knowledge. This makes it difficult, especially for large groups of students, to offer lectures at the right level. On the other hand, lectures offer the opportunity for students to speak to (top) professors and prominent guest speakers.

Part of the solution to this problem is offering this knowledge in the form of short videos in which the theory is explained and which students can view. This allows the students to watch the videos several times to make the material their own. This form of education is often combined with only working groups in which the substance is discussed further and the lectures expire. In our version, the videos are not only combined with work groups but also with master classes, where the students discuss the material with a professor who is expert in this specific area and with prominent guest speakers in this field. The preparation by the students in advance means that the discussion with the professor can be conducted at a high level with all students.

In the past 2 years we have applied this educational innovation to a master course in an interdisciplinary program. In addition to the regular evaluations, the viewing behavior of the students' films has been studied, we have set out a questionnaire among the students, and interviewed students. In addition, a response was requested from students who have received education in the old form. After the first year, we have made a number of adjustments within the course in the following year. This year too, students and questionnaire were plotted and qualitative data collected.

Important observations in connection with the introduction of the new 'instructional design' in the first year are: a very positive attitude of students towards the possibilities that the films offer in their exam preparation, a positive change in exam marks and success rate and, on many points , improved course evaluation. After the adjustments in the second year, it can be seen that especially the turnout in the masterclasses has greatly improved and the students also see the masterclasses as higher added value in their learning process.

The results of this study are published in:
W. S. Konijn, D. R. Essink, T. de Cock Buning & M. B. M. Zweekhorst (2018) Flipping the classroom: an effective approach to deal with diversity at higher education, Educational
Media International, 55:1, 64-78, DOI: 10.1080/09523987.2018.1439711

With the fund the team implemented the innovation in 1 other masterclass and two bachelor programs.

 See also: Masterclass-idee wint VU Innovatieprijs 2016