Classroom Response Systems: ToUse or Not to Use?

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Information about Classroom Response Systems: ToUse or Not to Use?

Published on June 10, 2007

Author: awhaley1



Classroom Response Systems: To Use or Not to Use?:  Classroom Response Systems: To Use or Not to Use? Allison Whaley ECI 511 What is a Classroom Response System (CRS)?:  What is a Classroom Response System (CRS)? A special type of software that uses remote control devices (keypads) and a receiver to allow teachers the opportunity to receive instant feedback from their students. How it works…:  How it works… The teacher displays a multiple choice question on a screen (via a projector) and students respond to that question using their keypads. Student responses are collected and immediately tallied and displayed for the teacher and students to see how many students chose each answer, thus allowing the teacher to easily assess students’ knowledge and/or understanding. Although student responses are visible to both the teacher and the students, student names are not attached to responses (student responses are usually attached to a number or other generic identification code known to the teacher) Materials Needed :  Materials Needed Receiver (connects to the USB port of teacher’s computer) Student response devices (keypads) (one for each student) Computer projector Projection screen/board Classroom Response System software (There are several companies that offer a variety of CRS programs) Various Types of Classroom Response System Keypads(  Various Types of Classroom Response System Keypads ( Why Use Classroom Response Systems?:  Why Use Classroom Response Systems? Assess prior knowledge of students Engage student learners Student interactivity during instruction Data Collection Attendance Encourage participation from every student Check for Understanding Stimulate class discussion Assessing Prior Knowledge of Students:  Assessing Prior Knowledge of Students Teacher can pose several questions prior to the start of a lesson Student responses will give teacher an idea of what his/her students already know and in what areas they need more instruction Students’ responses and prior knowledge help set the course for the upcoming lesson or unit Engage Student Learners:  Engage Student Learners The use of keypads keeps the attention of students CRS involves the entire class Using the keypads can be fun for students Student Interactivity During Instruction:  Student Interactivity During Instruction Students respond to teacher’s questions using the keypad rather than raising their hands and waiting to be called upon Student responses are immediately accessible to teacher and students Allows students to quickly see how well they are understanding the content in relation to their classmates Data Collection:  Data Collection Teachers can use CRS for quizzes or tests CRS allows for rapid grading of these quizzes and tests CRS can be used to gather opinions and/or predictions from the class Attendance:  Attendance Teacher is able to quickly and efficiently take attendance Students “sign-in” with their keypads when they get to class (In order for this process to work, each student should be assigned one specific keypad to use for the duration of the year) Encourage Participation from Every Student:  Encourage Participation from Every Student Each student is able to respond to the teacher’s questions rather than one student being called on to answer Anonymity of student responses allows even the shy students to participate without the fear of embarrassment Every student is able to contribute his/her opinion while seeing what their classmates think as well Check for Understanding:  Check for Understanding Teachers are able to immediately see if students understand the material being presented Teachers are able to identify what areas students are having trouble with and what needs to be re-taught Gives teacher an idea of how well he/she is transferring content to the students Teachers can also use CRS for test review games/activities, in which students respond to curriculum-related trivia questions. Stimulate Class Discussions:  Stimulate Class Discussions Once responses have been tallied, teacher and students are able to engage in a discussion regarding student responses Depending on the question and variance of student responses, teacher can choose to have students discuss in small groups and then share with the entire class Challenges and Drawbacks to Using Classroom Response Systems:  Challenges and Drawbacks to Using Classroom Response Systems Technical Problems Need for effective questioning skills on the part of the teacher Time spent distributing and collecting keypads Last-minute lesson plan changes if students are not responding to many questions correctly Students guessing rather than really thinking about the questions being presented (little to no mental processing is occurring) Cost of materials Challenges and Drawbacks continued…:  Challenges and Drawbacks continued… Technical Problems Problems with technology are to be expected Back up plan is needed in the event of a technical problem that is not a quick-fix Effective Questioning Skills Teacher needs to have some knowledge on how to ask multiple-choice questions Also needs skill in posing wrong answers that get students to really think before answering Challenges and Drawbacks continued…:  Challenges and Drawbacks continued… Distribution and Collection of Keypads Class time is spent passing out keypads at the beginning of a lesson and picking them back up at the conclusion Possible remedy: allow students (specifically older students) to keep the keypads between class periods Changes in Lesson Plans Students may not understand the material being presented as quickly or as well as originally planned Teacher should be flexible and able to adapt lesson plans in this event Challenges and Drawbacks continued…:  Challenges and Drawbacks continued… Student Guessing Teachers should beware of students who repeatedly guess at answers rather than take time to process the questions and choose the best answer Also beware that it may be the result of student’s misunderstanding of the material being presented Cost of Materials Several pieces of equipment are needed in order to implement Classroom Response Systems Equipment and software may be too expensive for some schools and/or school systems to purchase What does the Research Suggest?:  What does the Research Suggest? Research has shown that Classroom Response Systems can be very effective and beneficial for both students and teachers A recent study polled university students who have used CRS When compared with the traditional lecture format: 84% said it made the lecture a lot more fun 67% said it made them (the students) a lot more attentive 22% said it helped them learn a lot more Latessa, R., Mouw, D. (2005) Use of audience response system to augment interactive learning. Family Medicine, (37), 12-14. To Use or Not to Use?:  To Use or Not to Use? Although there are potential drawbacks to using Classroom Response Systems, the advantages of this technology integration tool are strong. In my opinion, the benefits outweigh the challenges. I would definitely use CRS in my classroom, if given the option. Resources:  Resources Draper, S.W. & Brown, M.I. (2004). Increasing interactivity in lectures using an electronic voting system. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 20, 81-94. Latessa, R. & Mouw, D. (2005). Use of an audience response system to augment interactive learning. Family Medicine, 37 (1), 12-14. Accessed online June 6, 2007. Accessed June 6, 2007 Accessed June 6, 2007 Resources continued…:  Resources continued… Images taken from: Microsoft Office ClipArt

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