The classroom response clicker system uses wireless technology (iCllcker devices) to facilitate student engagement with course content and provide a snapshot view of learner understanding during class. These systems are similar to the audience polling devices seen on television shows in which audience members vote.
As students submit their “votes” (answers to questions posed by the instructor) using their clicker, the responses are picked up by a small receiver unit plugged into a computer. These responses are recorded and collated, and the aggregated data can be displayed on-screen as a bar graph or histogram. This gives immediate feedback to students and the instructor about the learning in that class.
Here are a few ideas to get you started:
- Lecture with questions following – This helps to gauge how well students are “getting it” and reinforces important ideas.
- Pop quiz – Can be given at the beginning of class over previously assigned reading, content covered in an earlier class session, or at the end to determine learning progress.
- Answer/pair/answer – This technique consists of having students respond to a question, then having students work in pairs to discuss their answers, then answering again.
- Confidence levels – This can be used in conjunction with other questions (i.e., asking, “Indicate how confident you are in your answer by pressing 0 for not at all and 5 for very confident”) or to indicate overall confidence in understanding the day’s material.
- Polling – Using the anonymous feature, you can assess student opinions to spark class discussion regarding issues related to course content.
- Muddiest point – The main points covered in the class period are listed and students asked which, if any, are still confusing to them. This can help to plan the following class lesson plan, or time can be allowed to cover the most frequently cited item before the class ends.
Clickers can be used in any classroom in which there is a computer and data projector available. The only additional piece of equipment required is the clicker receiver that plugs into one of the computer’s USB ports. Several auditoria on campus (Wescoe, Budig, etc.) have receivers permanently available for faculty use, but if you are scheduled in a classroom without a clicker receiver, contact us and we’ll provide one. Some instructors use a flash drive, provided by the company, to run the iClicker software. The polling data is automatically stored on the flash drive for easy transport to the instructor's office computer. Other instructors choose to run the software from their laptop. Software for download to a laptop is freely available (see "Access").
If you choose to adopt iClickers in your classroom, you'll need to contact the KU Bookstore to be sure they order clickers for your course. Students will purchase the clickers at the KU Bookstore just as a textbook. Students will register their clickers in their course Blackboard site. Clicker registration allows course instructors to match students' responses to the students. After purchasing a clicker, there is no cost to the student to register their clicker for your course.
Optional Mobile App:
Instructors have the option to allow the use of the iClicker App, which allows students to use their personal laptops, mobile devices or smartphones as an iClicker.