Learning at large conferences: from the 'sage on the stage' to contemporary models of learning

Dario Torre (Lead / Corresponding author), Annalisa Manca, Steven Durning, Janusz Janczukowicz, David Taylor, Jennifer A. Cleland

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    8 Citations (Scopus)
    204 Downloads (Pure)


    AIM: To explore and evaluate the affordances of a flipped classroom model applied to a research paper session within the professional development opportunity of a large conference setting.

    METHOD: Authors were invited to present their research papers in a flipped classroom presentation format at two large, multi-national conferences. Before the session, authors and moderators met online to clarify features of the session, and preparation of the material. The research material was then posted online before the conference, to allow access by meeting attendees. During the sessions, moderators encouraged the audience to actively participate. An evaluation form was collected from the audience at the end of each session.

    RESULTS: Participants found the session valuable, and appreciated the opportunity to engage in a meaningful dialogue with colleagues. However, the majority of the audience did not access the materials in advance. Lack of time, or technology-related issues were mentioned as potential challenges to such format.

    CONCLUSION: In the context of a large conference, a 'flipped session' format can facilitate active learning and a participatory culture of inquiry. However, to change the nature of how individuals learn collaboratively at large conferences means a change in the culture of continuous professional learning.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)205-208
    Number of pages4
    JournalPerspectives on Medical Education
    Issue number3
    Early online date11 Apr 2017
    Publication statusPublished - Jun 2017


    • Flipped classroom
    • Conference
    • Innovation


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