MAKING THE CLASSROOM MORE ENGAGING WITH AN AUDIENCE RESPONSE SYSTEM
University of South Florida (UNITED STATES)
About this paper:
Conference name: 5th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 7-9 March, 2011
Location: Valencia, Spain
Abstract:Audience Response Systems (ARS) are gaining popularity in many educational venues including K-12, college/university, professional programs, and continuing education. ARS systems are an innovative educational technique that can be used to turn passive learning into student participation. It’s benefits have been reported to improve student learning, improve teaching effectiveness, reduce paperwork associated with attendance taking, etc, and provide opportunities for data collection that is otherwise difficult to collect. Additionally using an audience response system creatively improves attendance, creates more active participation, and results in better learning and retention.
Many types of questions can be utilized with an ARS including: assessment of student preparation, including completion of homework or pre-laboratory questions; surveying student opinions: for formative assessment by assigning student’s understanding of material in the lecture; as well as the ability to create interactive questions “on-the-fly” during the presentationSeveral authors have reported positive improvement in attendance and comprehension with the use of an ARS.
There are some limitations to the use of an ARS including decreased time spend on content coverage (this may be compensated by perceived improvements in student comprehension), the cost of the units and the small learning curve for both instructors and students. An ARS allows the instructor to collect and share “real-time” data with students, providing immediate feedback from all students, not just the usual extroverts in the class. The data can include simple student opinion or may include recall of factual information in a non-threatening environment. Because students have more anonymity than with typical question and answer sessions in the classroom, they are more likely to respond even if they don’t know the answer. Additionally, audience response systems can help to make learning more fun for students with the implementation of “team” competitions.
Best practice tips for the use of an ARS in the classroom include: knowing why you are using an ARS in the class, having an advanced plan for dealing with technological difficulties or for students who forget their “clickers”, plan for extra discussion time as students will be an active part of the lecture instead of passive learners. This presentation will guide the participant through the design and delivery of questions using an audience response system including best practices. The presentation will be entirely interactive, utilizing the audience response system. Participants will be guided through the use of various types of questions and strategies to engage the learner.
Keywords: Audience response system, interactive classroom.