Answers have always been a finger click away for Generation Y, those between the ages of 18 and 24, because they have grown up with the Internet and text messaging.
Researchers have found that young people immediately turn to the Internet when looking for details. Instead of remembering the details they actually try to remember where the certain information is. (I do this all the time, which is why my bookmarks bar is such a mess).
Doing this is using transactive memory (memory that uses external sources to store and retrieve information).
How is this affecting college students’ learning experience though?
Optimists would say this amount of constant stimulation gives Generation Y the ability to learn more. While others may say growing up with this much “constant stimulation” from email, text messages and online video games is a bad thing because it leads to decreased productivity, addiction and shorter attention spans.
The Internet cannot be the only one to blame for Gen Y’s inability to focus.
Unfortunately, yes, Generation Y has not necessarily been learning more, but it may not be their fault. We process information in a very different way from our parents, and while the Internet has dramatically changed the way students learn, the way universities teach has changed little in the past few decades.
Gen Y needs stimulating and interactive learning, and I believe flipped online learning would be ideal for them.
Flipped online learning would make online classes a thousand times more fun.
In short, flipped online learning would involve a larger focus on the student producing the learning materials and having an online instructor be more of a ‘guide on the side’ as it were. Rather than watching videos and taking a quiz, you’d have a robust discussion, have students create projects to share with classmates, and generate more discussion out of that.
What do you think about flipped online learning? Do you think you would learn more this way? Let us know in your comments below.