Tag Archives: Clickers

Add some pizzazz to your lectures!

Ahh yes, February. The days are short, the weather is dreary, and the only thing that may be on the minds of your students is the fact that there is only one month until spring break. It’s that time of the semester where you may find yourself going above and beyond in an effort to stimulate your students.  We have put together a list of things you can do to add a little pizzazz to your lectures and keep your students motivated and focused!

  • If you are tired of using PowerPoint as your go-to presentation tool, check out Prezi. This free web-based tool will put a unique twist on your presentations and still allow you to add images, videos, and more!
  • To get students more involved in your lecture and keep them focused, try TurningPoint! Each student has their own clicker and can directly respond to questions and you will be provided with instant feedback!
  • Check out TED.com for speeches across the world on any subject you could imagine-a TED video could be a great addition to your lecture! If you like the idea of using educational videos to enhance your lectures, check out Snag Films, Academic Earth, or YouTube EDU for some more great videos.
  • If you like to walk around your classroom during lectures (or like to roam around making sure students aren’t spending the hour browsing Facebook) try out Engage. This tool is an extension of your computer and lets you navigate whatever is on the screen from anywhere in the classroom!

 

 

Make your Classroom Interactive

As promised in our previous blog, we are going to be presenting new and interesting tools for you to incorporate into your classrooms that are free, simple, and incredibly useful. Involving students in your classroom sessions rather than just lecturing to them can prove to be very beneficial on both their part and your own. One way to involve them throughout the entire class session is to consistently be getting their feedback-in a high-tech way.

We have a few options for you to try this out if you haven’t yet. Turning Point, a tool we have blogged about often, and is available for your use, is an audience response system. By simply providing your students with the “clickers” and using the Turning Point software, you are able to create presentations that look exactly like your PowerPoint, but incorporate questions for the students to answer as you go. It provides instant feedback, so right after they all enter their answers and polling closes, you can discuss the results.

Another tool we have come across recently that does something similar is web-based, free, and allows students to use any device with an internet connection (tablets, smartphones, and laptops). Socrative allows teachers to log into their accounts during class and instantaneously ask a question for their students-the students then are able to log in to their own accounts and answer. This allows real-time interaction and collaboration among the students and educators in the classroom. Additionally, educators can pre-plan activities or assessments and view the data in Google Docs or Excel!

Both of these tools put a new twist on the traditional college classroom and create a more interactive environment (and more alert, prepared students!). If you would like to give them a try, don’t hesitate to contact us to answer your questions or help you get started!

 

 

As promised in our previous blog, we are going to be presenting new and interesting tools for you to incorporate into your classrooms that are free, simple, and incredibly useful. Involving students in your classroom sessions rather than just lecturing to them can prove to be very beneficial on both their part and your own. One way to involve them throughout the entire class session is to consistently be getting their feedback-in a high-tech way.

We have a few options for you to try this out if you haven’t yet. Turning Point, a tool we have blogged about often, and is available for your use, is an audience response system. By simply providing your students with the “clickers” and using the Turning Point software, you are able to create presentations that look exactly like your PowerPoint, but incorporate questions for the students to answer as you go. It provides instant feedback, so right after they all enter their answers and polling closes, you can discuss the results.

Another tool we have come across recently that does something similar is web-based, free, and allows students to use any device with an internet connection (tablets, smartphones, and laptops). Socrative allows teachers to log into their accounts during class and instantaneously ask a question for their students-the students then are able to log in to their own accounts and answer. This allows real-time interaction and collaboration among the students and educators in the classroom. Additionally, educators can pre-plan activities or assessments and view the data in Google Docs or Excel!

Both of these tools put a new twist on the traditional college classroom and create a more interactive environment (and more alert, prepared students!). If you would like to give them a try, don’t hesitate to contact us to answer your questions or help you get started!

5 ways you can use…Clickers!

TurningPoint is an audience response system allowing users to essentially “poll” their audience. Through presentations and responding devices, known as “clickers”, audience members can respond to questions prompted on a slide, and users are able to instantly view the results for feedback. TurningPoint can be used in a variety of ways in college classrooms. Here are 5 ideas to get you started:

  1. TurningPoint can be used as a great way to get instant feedback on the effectiveness or student comprehension of lecture material. Simply ask questions before the lecture and at the end of the lecture as a pre and posttest, and get insight on how the audience is grasping the material presented.
  2. Multiple choice tests can be transformed into presentations, and students can give their responses in just a click! Try creating mock tests for students to use during a review session to gain instant feedback on areas that need to be further covered.
  3. Using TurningPoint is a great way to decrease your workload with tracking attendance, grading multiple choice tests and quizzes, and then importing the grades into your grade book. Simply assign each student a clicker and then track their grades and attendance with the software!
  4. Play “Who wants to be a Millionaire” and your students can actually poll the audience.
  5. The use of TurningPoint is not limited to the classroom; try using it at departmental meetings, functions, etc. to vote, seek opinions, prompt discussion, and more!

Using clickers in your class will help break social barriers experienced by students about knowing or not knowing the “right” answer, will help reset their clock with questions to answer every 10 minutes or so, and serve as a great facilitation for group discussions. For more information on using TurningPoint in your classroom, please contact us!

If you would like to “Ask the Audience”…

Now that Spring Break is over, you may find that your students are a little less interested in their schoolwork and a little more interested in rushing to the finish line to kick off their summer plans. If you are in need of a magic tool that will keep your students alert and on their toes during class, checkout TurningPoint.

TurningPoint is an audience response system that integrates into your PowerPoint presentations. You can integrate slides into your presentations asking questions, and then instantly receive the results from your audience’s responses, which they submit via a clicker. It’s a great way to gain insight from your audience and stimulate discussions. Another useful way to use TurningPoint is to assign students to a specific clicker and track their individual responses-a great way to incorporate pop quizzes or participation points into your lecture!  The points from the quizzes can even be imported directly into Blackboard’s Grade Center.

Not a fan of PowerPoint?  No need to worry!  Turning Point AnyWhere allows you to get audience input from any application.

For more information about clickers, including how other universities are using clickers in the classroom, visit our Audience Response System webpage.

If you would like any assistance in using TurningPoint, feel free to contact us and we would be glad to help!

Save a Tree-Use Technology!

No, it is not Earth Day, (although we could all use a little spring weather in our lives right now) but we should always make an effort to reduce waste and find alternative ways to carry out our daily routines. And as members of a campus community, it’s pretty safe to say we may use paper like it’s water. So why not use some of the great technology we have to help reduce the amount of paper used in class? Here are a few ways you can reduce waste and add a little ease and convenience to your busy schedule.

Get SMART

Use your SMARTBoards! Not only will these boards mesmerize your students like they are magic, but they are fun, convenient, and extremely useful. Instead of writing notes on paper or distributing endless copies of exam reviews, use the SMARTBoard to write on internet pages, documents, PDFs, PowerPoints (really anything!), and then SMARTBoard can capture your notes so you can upload them to BlackBoard or send them to your students in PDF format.

Poll Away

Ahh Turning Point, another tool that may mesmerize your students. Do you use paper for quizzes? Attendance? Participation responses? All of these can be easily incorporated into a presentation and used through Turning Point. This audience response system allows instructors to ask questions in a presentation and receive responses from students. The best part is Turning Point actually reduces the work for you! No more having to fumble through papers to grade quizzes-simply import the results into Blackboard and your grading is complete!

Make your classes a little greener and check out how these quick tips (all available to you!) can help save some trees while making your life a little easier. Feel free to contact us if you have any questions or would like to learn how to start using these tools in your classroom.