-The Iclicker approach of Student learning
With the start of every new semester comes a set of new inspirations, new goals and new expectations. Expectations from myself of attending every lecture, scoring A+ in each class and maybe even get in the dean’s honor roll. And as much as I hate to admit, there is a slight hitch in fulfilling my all expectations. That is 8 AM lectures; which can be extremely hard for night owls like me. Most of the university students hate early morning lectures and are likely to skip them. But with the new iclicker approach, instructors have found a way to decrease this possibility. This new student response system such as the ICLICKERS are an innovative technique for student learning and engagement. Instructors have implemented iclickers for a fair amount of grade participation to increase student engagement.
Below is an image of two iclickers with their batteries turned on along with a box it comes in.
What are iclickers?
Iclickers are devices where students are a click away from sending their answers wirelessly. The answers are recorded automatically within seconds. The instructor can record and then display the response of the class almost instantly. The instructors can then make necessary improvisations in their teaching based on the polling results from the questions and hence, explain the topic more effectively.
There has been research conducted to show how effective iclickers were in an Introductory biochemistry class at University of Alberta.
The results have shown that majority of the students found that iclickers enhanced their learning. Although, the students who were receiving a high grade actually found the clickers more effective whereas the students falling behind in their grades didn’t prefer the use of them.
The Science Education Initiatives at UBC and University of Colorado, produced a video from experienced clicker instructors as follows-
Video demonstration to explain students why they should be using clickers, Produced by the University of Colorado Science Education Initiative (Licensed under Creative commons attribution) at http://STEMclickers.colorado.edu
Other benefits of iclickers
It is also believed that iclickers also tend to boost confidence of the students. It increases the student’s ability to ask questions if they didn’t understand a type of iclicker or a related question. Therefore, automatically increasing student learning and participation. The number of students engaged in a poll can be assessed by the instructor. As the iclickers are linked with the student ID’s, this is used as a tool to assess the number of students attending the lecture and thereby, accounts for the (iclicker) attendance grades. The students are believed to have enhanced their anxiety and confusion over trickier topics by participating in the questions. Even if they get the question wrong, the student can actually visualize that he/she isn’t alone in understanding the problem. This also gives the instructor a quick rationalization to go over the topic in greater detail. It is also believed that iclickers helped students to enjoy the lecture and make it fun. When engaging in a problem, there are psychological effects on the brain, hence the student thinks much more on the question and the topic. Some instructors also involve working in groups, which also enhances students learning by talking to each other and sharing information amongst each other.
Another video discussing the benefits of iclickers-
Video demonstration to depict various benefits of iclickers for student learning, (uploaded by iclickerclique)
By : Simrat Chahal