Flipped classroom and digitization: an inductive study on the learning framework for 21st century skill acquisition


  • Malini Mittal Bishnoi


flipped classroom; flipped learning; higher education; 21st century skills; Industry 4.0 readiness; digitization.


While increasingly demands have been made on Higher Education Institutions for revamping
curriculum designs and instructional pedagogies to adapt to the 21st century digitized learning and
skill environment, the COVID-19 pandemic underscored this adaption as the singular solution to
maintain the learning continuum. The inverted or flipped classroom has emerged as an enabling
learning framework offering a convergence of technological advancements with active and
collaborative learning. This study investigates the correlation between the flipped learning pedagogy
in higher education and the acquisition of 21st century skills in the current digitized environment to
meet Industry 4.0 readiness landscape. Primary data for this study was collected using a scientifically
deployed mixed methods survey research and in-depth interviews from undergraduate students across
universities to get their input on what they experienced and perceived as learners through the
classroom flip experience. Until today, there has been lack of focus on Higher Education in the literature
on an effective pedagogy for cultivating 21st century skills. This is an original research work which
presents a holistic view of what elements are offered by ‘flipped learning’ as key to the development
of 21st century skills and competences considering the demands of the fourth industrial revolution (IR
4.0) from Higher Education Institutions, for creation of a job resilient workforce. The findings of the
study showed that the flipped classroom model was experientially and perceptibly preferred by
undergraduates for the acquisition of 21st century skills and competencies needed for industry 4.0
readiness amongst other reasons. The results of this study have implications for students, faculty and
higher education institutions.