Journal of Science Education and Technology

, Volume 27, Issue 5, pp 469–479 | Cite as

The Impact of Video Length on Learning in a Middle-Level Flipped Science Setting: Implications for Diversity Inclusion

  • Krista Slemmons
  • Kele Anyanwu
  • Josh Hames
  • Dave Grabski
  • Jeffery Mlsna
  • Eric Simkins
  • Perry Cook


Popularity of videos for classroom instruction has increased over the years due to affordability and user-friendliness of today’s digital video cameras. This prevalence has led to an increase in flipped, K-12 classrooms countrywide. However, quantitative data establishing the appropriate video length to foster authentic learning is limited, particularly in middle-level classrooms. We focus on this aspect of video technology in two flipped science classrooms at the middle school level to determine the optimal video length to enable learning, increase retention and support student motivation. Our results indicate that while assessments directly following short videos were slightly higher, these findings were not significantly different from scores following longer videos. While short-term retention of material did not seem to be influenced by video length, longer-term retention for males and students with learning disabilities was higher following short videos compared to long as assessed on summative assessments. Students self-report that they were more engaged, had enhanced focus, and had a perceived higher retention of content following shorter videos. This study has important implications for student learning, application of content, and the development of critical thinking skills. This is particularly paramount in an era where content knowledge is just a search engine away.


Middle school science Flipped classroom Video length Online learning 



We would like to thank the administrative staff of PJ Jacobs for supporting this study. We also thank the Institution Review Board at University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point for their guidance. We thank the University of Wisconsin Systems, Wisconsin Teaching Fellows and Scholars Program, for guidance and financial support.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed Consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.

Animal Studies

This article does not contain any studies with animals performed by any of the authors.

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Biology DepartmentUW-Stevens PointStevens PointUSA
  2. 2.Education DepartmentUW-Stevens PointStevens PointUSA
  3. 3.PJ Jacobs Junior High SchoolStevens PointUSA
  4. 4.Douglas County School DistrictCastle RockUSA
  5. 5.Center for Inclusive Teaching and LearningUW-Stevens PointStevens PointUSA

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