Flipping the Classroom to Enhance Opportunities for Differentiated Instruction

  • Deanna Saunders University of Roehampton
Keywords: flipped classroom, differentiated instruction, inclusive practice, English for Academic Purposes, blended learning


This paper will consider how flipping the classroom can enhance opportunities for differentiated instruction (DI) in Higher Education. DI is a potentially problematic concept, especially when differentiating learning and teaching can result in both the inclusion and exclusion of learners. Moreover, if differentiated learning and teaching is not carefully considered, it can perpetuate and enhance existing inequalities, promoting a type of ‘Matthew Effect’ in education (Westwood, 2001). A reflection will be presented on how flipping the classroom has been utilised for the purposes of DI on a compulsory ‘Communication for Academic Purposes’ module on the foundation year of an extended degree programme. In particular, this paper will look at the implementation of a ‘partial’ flip and how the inversion of content delivery enhanced the potential for DI at the levels of ‘process’ and ‘environment’ (Tomlinson and Moon, 2013). In light of the Covid-19 pandemic, and a shift to remote learning and teaching, I will conclude by commenting on how this pedagogical strategy might now be more attractive in an era of remote/blended content delivery.


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Author Biography

Deanna Saunders, University of Roehampton

Deanna Saunders is a Lecturer in English and Academic Skills on the Extended Degree programme at the University of Roehampton, London. As a lecturer on the foundation year, Deanna’s research and teaching interests involve student retention and engagement, widening participation, the flipped classroom and blended learning methods. As an applied linguist, Deanna’s research interests lay broadly around critiquing discourses about immigration and uncovering latent racist ideologies, particularly within (social) media texts. She recently completed her PhD at Canterbury Christ Church University, which utilised critical discourse analysis to examine racist representations and evaluations of Romanian and Bulgarian citizens in online newspapers and public comment threads.