This is interesting. McGladrey has been talking about flipping classrooms but hasn’t done anything at any scale yet. What appeals to me about Classroom Salon is that it presents a way to envision the pre-classroom media portion of the class more than packaged, passive lecture, but rather as an interactive discussion. The way it works is that a document, or any artifact, I guess, is shared. Learners can read the document, highlight it, and comment on it, and the highlights and comments are viewable by all other learners in the class, who themselves can add highlights and comments, even threaded discussions. That sort of collaborative editing is not new–many programs can do it–but the novelty for me is in the use of document markup to replace or augment pre-recorded lectures as the prerequisite for entering a flipped classroom. I’m picturing instructors uploading important documents and embedding instructions like “highlight the biggest changes to today’s tax code,” for instance, and learners being able to see the most common highlights. Or the instructor seeding the conversation with specific questions about the reading, and then participating in the online discussions. Certainly in my experience, pre-reading assignments without accountability have low completion rates. This tool not only provides advisability tracking, but also makes reading a more active learning experience.