Flipped for the Sciences: Course Design

2:00pm - 3:00pm EST February 5, 2014

Last November, seminar leaders Maha Zewail Foote and Steven Neshyba introduced how they are using “flipped” classroom techniques to engage students in the sciences. What’s next? Whether you simply want to experiment with flipped techniques or you’ve decided to flip an entire course, join them for a follow-up seminar as they present a model for flipping a course and share examples of in-classroom activities. (Times EST)

On November 13, 2013, seminar leaders Maha Zewail Foote and Steven Neshyba presented Flipped for the Sciences, in which they shared why they became interested in “flipping” a classroom and introduced the “flipped” techniques they are using to engage students in the sciences. In this follow-up seminar, they offer some practical guidelines on what aspects of your course to flip, and how to flip them. They’ll share strategies for sequencing topics, identifying learning objectives, and motivating students in ways that maximize the benefit of the flipped format. They’ll talk about designing student-centered approaches, such as just-in-time development, that promote serendipitous learning. They’ll also talk about pedagogical experiments that didn’t work out as well as they had hoped. Whether you have already flipped a classroom, experimented with flipped techniques, or are uncertain about whether flipping is suitable for your courses, join the seminar leaders and other colleagues from the NITLE Network who are examining the value of this approach.

You are also invited to submit, before the seminar, a learning objective for a course that you would like to flip. The seminar leaders will choose from among these objectives to show how a lesson focused on one of them could be taught in a flipped environment. Please join Maha Zewail Foote, professor of chemistry at Southwestern University, and Steven Neshyba, professor of chemistry at University of Puget Sound, as they seek to help students find their own pathways to master learning in the sciences.

Recommended Reading

Please review and explore these resources to prepare for active engagement with your fellow seminar participants.

Seminar Leaders

Maha Zewail Foote is a professor of chemistry and chair of the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas. With the help of a grant from the Associated Colleges of the South, she worked through many pedagogical and technological strategies to develop blended learning modules that flipped her general chemistry classes in ways that engage students and increase teacher-student interactions during class time. Her research focuses on the chemistry of photoinduced DNA damage and drug-DNA interactions, an example of which was the paper she co-authored, “A sequence-specific threading tetra-intercalator with an extremely slow dissociation rate constant,” published in Nature Chemistry in 2011.

Steven Neshyba is a professor of chemistry at the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, Washington. He is interested in modern computational and online technologies not only as pedagogical tools, but also as a growing component of a contemporary undergraduate skill set. He has been exploring these ideas through flipped computational guided inquiry modules in his General Chemistry and Physical Chemistry courses. Neshyba’s research at Puget Sound focuses on the physical chemistry of clouds.

Event Hashtag

Participants are encouraged to share their thoughts on Twitter via this event’s hashtag: #nitle


Those interested in delving into the techniques and technologies that could be used to help students find their own pathways to science mastery should attend this seminar. Attendance by institutional teams is encouraged; individuals are also welcome to participate.

Please register online by Monday, February 3. Participation in NITLE Shared Academics is open to all active member institutions of the NITLE Network as a benefit of membership and as space allows. No additional registration fee applies.

Discussion Guide

For those interested in starting conversations on their campuses, a discussion guide will be available.


For more information about this event, please contact Georgianne Hewett at ghewett@nitle.org.

NITLE Shared AcademicsTM models a new approach to liberal education – made possible through strategic collaboration, driven by shared knowledge, and supported by emerging technologies. Campuses learn how inter-institutional academic exchange works by actively participating in it, building the knowledge and experience to re-architect liberal education.