This study examined the flipped classroom through the eyes of pre-service language teachers to reveal what hinders them from or encourages them to adopt this approach.
Data were collected from students in a Computer-Assisted Language Learning (CALL) course; they experienced two flipped class sessions (complementing the traditional instructor-led sessions) and completed a survey about their experiences. Semi-structured interviews were also conducted with a sub-set of students to examine their perceptions in greater depth.
Three major themes emerged regarding benefits of the flipped classroom: learner autonomy, learning by doing with support, and preventing cognitive overload.
Four challenges emerged: learners’ technology access and technical ability, technical support for instructors, ambiguous student responsibility, and an inability to provide immediate clarification.
Three additional notable themes emerged: heightened awareness of peers in the classroom, different reactions to content-oriented versus technically-oriented instructional videos, and student workload.
These themes are discussed in detail, along with suggestions for teacher training and professional development. Also considered is the need to establish guidelines for best practices in flipped classrooms and to develop high-quality approaches to flipping without a dependence on instructional videos.