Modes of delivery

The traditional form of teaching in a University often involves lectures being given to large groups of students, accompanied by tutorials and workshops, with some independent study. However, there are several other modes of delivery that can also be very effective, and you may have come across terms such as the flipped classroom and problem based learning. This information below is designed to give you an overview of various modes of delivery you can consider in your teaching and learning.


Flipped classroom

The flipped classroom is a pedagogical model where lecture and homework elements are reversed. This means that a recording of a lecture is viewed by students at home before coming to the lecture, and then the contact time itself is devoted to discussion and activities.

This approach means that students have done background work on a topic before coming into a teaching session, so the tutor has more time during the session to go into more depth, or to help students with aspects they don’t understand. Students are able to identify which areas they are challenged by, from watching the recording beforehand, and then work on these during contact time.

Points to consider regarding the flipped classroom.


Problem based learning

Whereas in traditional teaching a lecturer would give students information or the 'answers', in problem based learning you present students with a problem rather than a solution. This allows students to become more active in their learning as they work out which information they need to find out to solve a particular problem. There are many advantages to students in using this approach, as it allows them to:

  • Develop transferable and employability skills that will be useful in the workplace
  • Improve communication and team working
  • Practice research and information processing
  • Develop debating and analytical skills

Case study: Problem based learning in physics, University of Liverpool


Work based learning

As the name suggests, this mode of delivery provides students with real-life work experiences to aid their learning and improve their employability. Workplace learning is integrated into the curriculum to allow students to experience theories in practice. This could be done through internships, job shadowing or field trips.

An introduction to work based learning, The Higher Education Academy.


Blended learning

Blended learning (also known as hybrid learning) is when traditional classroom teaching is combined with online learning and independent study, allowing the student to have more control over the time, pace and style of their learning.

Jisc guide to creating blended learning content.


Student-led learning

Student- or peer-led learning is where students themselves facilitate their learning, often by students in the year above guiding students in group activities to discuss materials with their peers and solve problems. This helps them to think through what they have previously been taught and encourages collaborative learning.

Peer assisted learning.


You can also find out more about improving your teaching strategies in large or small groups, and using practical demonstrations.

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