Posted by: paralleldivergence | January 6, 2009

“Clickers” and “Virtual Clickers”

For a few years now, Personal Response Systems (PRS) and Student Response Systems (SRS) have been making major inroads into classrooms and lecture halls, particularly in Universities and Colleges.  These “clicker” systems literally put engagement, motivation, participation and instant feedback into the palm of each student’s hand.

In most classrooms today, the teacher asks a question and usually one person will reply with the answer. If it’s right, the answer is accepted and the lesson continues – regardless of whether the rest of the class agrees with or understands why the given answer was correct.  In a “clicker” classroom, the teacher displays the question she would like to ask and offers four multiple choice answers.  EVERY student then offers their answer by pressing a button on their clicker and seconds later, a bar chart appears on the screen with the results of everyone’s personal understanding.

Was the correct answer the most selected by the whole class? If not, it’s clear that the teacher has some more explaining to do. Even if it was the most selected, did any students answer incorrectly?  Instantly we have the opportunity to question further and reinforce the subject matter in all students. The power of participation with instant feedback cannot be underestimated.

There is no question that clickers are a valuable and effective teaching and learning resource. Unfortunately though, their up-front cost  puts them out of reach of most K-12 schools that already spend most of their ICT budgets on computers, networking and ongoing maintenance of their existing computer facilities.  But many schools are fortunate enough to have a computer lab and some even have one-to-one laptop programs. Wouldn’t it be great if there was a way to use the existing computers in front of each student to get them to operate like a clicker does?

That’s what Student Response Network is. A quick, reliable and effective clicker solution that anyone can operate. No IT specialists required. Up and running in seconds. Integrating ICT into teaching and learning the easy way. 

Find out more via the menu above.

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