Student response systems (clickers, polling, etc.) provide an alternative method of engaging students in the classroom while facilitating real-time assessment of student comprehension. The ability to capture live information about teaching and learning allows for flexibility and change. Response tools support the increased focus in education around data-driven teaching.
Instructors often use student response technology in the classroom to:
- Review questions in the form of games, played individually or in teams
- Conduct opinion surveys and provide visual representations
- Administer pre-tests to measure students’ entry knowledge
- Administer post-tests to measure mastery of course content
- Provide visual feedback to students of how they compare to peers
- Re-poll in same session to measure gains in understanding
- Promote collaboration by assigning groups and then encouraging discussion and consensus building
- Generate instant feedback on a question, issue or calculation
- Increase communication and participation
- Capture formative and summative assessment by measuring student preparation, understanding or satisfaction
- Gather research data
For most uses, Northeastern recommends Poll Everywhere. Northeastern has licensed Poll Everywhere for use in the online and on-ground classroom, so it is available free of charge for students and faculty.
Because different faculty rely on a variety of different features to support their teaching styles, we offer limited training and integration support for faculty who choose one of several other student response technologies, including Top Hat and TurningPoint Cloud. Learning Catalytics is another good option for faculty who need additional question types or other functionality, but this system can only integrate into the Blackboard system via Pearson online content.
Compare features with our response tool matrix (Excel) (a work in progress).
Feel free to get in touch for a consultation on which technology might be best for your teaching style.