Learning Response Systems

These have been commonly referred to as Clicker Systems, and people are still hot for them.  I’m not a strong advocate of most clicker systems.  Back in the 90’s the school I taught at converted a room so that each desk had a wired multiple choice response system (no computer integration at the time).  For me, multiple choice response systems are more of a distraction than a benefit (students still do rotten on similar questions in summative evaluations).  Some of new online options thought provide benefits.  One potential drawback for some teachers is that students will be using their web-enabled devices.  There are many teachers out there that ban the use of these in class, so they may not be ready for these tools. The following systems are device independent, meaning you do not need to purchase additional equipment.  There are a number of other options out there, like Promethus and Qwizdom, but they require either special servers or special instructor equipment.  Let’s face it, not options for teachers to try themselves, and for schools, is the expense really worth it?  Remember, you need buy in from both instructors and students before it is worth while.

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Top Hat Monocle

Using mobile devices and computers, students can respond to instructor questions.  This goes beyond simple multiple choice, as there are multiple response formats.  The problem is the cost.  I’ve really liked what I’ve seen, but I’ve never gotten to try it fully in a classroom due to last minute schedule changes.  Colleagues have tried it, and liked it, but the problem was always the cost.  It is just too expensive when there is no administrative support.

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Socrative

This is a FREE option, and students can respond on any web-enabled device!  It provides multiple response options, including short answer (my favorite).  A great choice if you want to start exploring the new generation of response systems.