Redesigning first year anatomy and physiology subjects for allied health students: Introducing active learning experiences for physiology in a first semester subject

Pam Lee Megaw, Monika Andrea Zimanyi


In this paper we describe the initial development of flipped classroom learning activities for the physiology component of a first year anatomy and physiology class for allied health students, and the subsequent transformation to focus on active learning strategies over a period of three years. The learning activities incorporated included the use of audience response systems for in-class quizzing, mini case studies, role plays, and simulations. Results of on-course assessment items, consisting of on-line quizzes, was compared in order to determine whether active learning approaches improved academic performance. We found that academic performance increased across the cohorts when first implemented as flipped classroom, and the increase was maintained in the subsequent years focussing on the active learning strategies alone. We conclude that the introduction of active learning experiences to this class enhanced engagement and academic performance across the student cohorts.

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