KSC Instructional Technology

3.26.2007

April Brown Bag Discussion

Breaking with tradition: Brown Bag discussion on Tuesday, April 3, from 12:30 to 1:30 in Rhodes Hall room 163 (ESEC Lab) with Economics Professors Patrick Dolenc and David Ornstil, and Political Science Professor Wes Martin.

Classroom discussion can be a lively debate of ideas and concepts, but sometimes it is more like that scene from Ferris Bueller’s Day Off; “Anyone? Anyone? Voodoo economics…”. It is clear if students aren’t engaged; but sometimes less clear if they truly understand the information presented. Professors Patrick Dolenc, David Ornstil, and Wes Martin tried a technology approach this past semester and required students to use a “clicker” during some classes as part of a student response system (SRS).

Educause describes student response systems and clickers this way: “Clickers use infrared or radio frequency technology to transmit and record student responses to questions. A small, portable receiving station is placed in the front of the class to collect and record student responses.” Student responses can be immediately displayed on a screen at the front of the classroom in any number of formats; percentages or pie charts for example.

Dolenc said he hoped to engage more students by allowing them to answer prepared questions anonymously, and get feedback on student comprehension at the same time through the results recorded by the SRS.

It’s a modified approach to teaching as well as learning, and Dolenc, Ornstil, and Martin learned that there are some bumps along the road to success. Join them on Tuesday, April 3, from 12:30 to 1:30 in the ESEC Lab in Rhodes Hall to find out more about the student response system they tested. Bring your lunch and your curiosity.

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