Click go the students, click-click-click: how to give and gain students' feedback to dynamically modify delivery in the classroom to students' needs

Mula, Joseph M. (2008) Click go the students, click-click-click: how to give and gain students' feedback to dynamically modify delivery in the classroom to students' needs. In: 2008 AFAANZ/IAAER Conference, 6-8 July 2008, Sydney, Australia.

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How many of us have presented a lecture to a room of students over one, two or three hours with little interaction or feedback as to how much they understand what has just been presented? It would be great to have some feedback about their understanding of the material being presented. Not when they do the final exam but when we can do something about it. It would be invaluable to hear from each student what they have not understood, if not learnt.

We ask questions only to be answered (if at all) by the best students while the timid, average or less articulate students just sit there even though they may not have understood. Some students do not respond to questions or request for feedback due to the fact that even though they are physically in the classroom their minds are somewhere else. They are thinking about other things or courses/subjects – leave you to guess what’s on their minds and gaining their foremost attention. Other students do not respond for fear of retribution either from their fellow students or from the teacher whom they perceive may think of them as ‘dumb’. Some don’t answer because they can’t put into words what is concerning them. This could be because they are not sure what to say or in the case of many overseas students, they perceive they can’t express themselves adequately in English. Many students have a fear of speaking in a group and don’t respond from a fear of looking inept. There is always a group of students that answer or attempt to answer every question and dominate, leaving no chances for other less assertive students to respond. Then there is the group of students that do not understand or follow the logic of the argument presented. This group is not mutually exclusive of the other groups’ described sharing similar characteristics. It is purported that there are many students in our classes that can’t follow the content delivery, particularly at the pace at which material is delivered in contemporary classrooms and courses. More material is being crammed into courses and programs without full recognition given to the need for the additional time required to cover the material. This produced one-way communication with little feedback from, and interaction with, students.

Traditional approaches to gaining feedback through the use of questions and quizzes have a lot to be desired. This paper presents a technology-based solution that is not new but has evolved into a feedback mechanism which provides lecturers with a non-intrusive but effective pedagogy. It provides a method that can overcome many of the barriers presented above while giving and gaining student feedback to dynamically modify delivery in the classroom to help focus on students’ needs as identified by students themselves. Variously described a ‘clickers’, audience response systems, personal response systems, and
student response systems, they have evolved as an effective technology in education and training but have been popularised in TV game shows such as “Sale of the Century”.

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Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Commonwealth Reporting Category E) (Paper)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Authors retain copyright.
Faculty / Department / School: Historic - Faculty of Business - School of Accounting, Economics and Finance
Date Deposited: 21 May 2010 05:41
Last Modified: 02 Jul 2013 23:28
Uncontrolled Keywords: clickers, audience response systems, personal response systems, student response systems, students, feedback
Fields of Research : 08 Information and Computing Sciences > 0899 Other Information and Computing Sciences > 089999 Information and Computing Sciences not elsewhere classified
13 Education > 1301 Education Systems > 130199 Education systems not elsewhere classified

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