June 23, 2013
June 23, 2013
June 26, 2013
23.1205.1 - 23.1205.13
The Impact of Clickers on Your Classroom and Your CareerStudent response units or clickers enhance student learning by providing immediatefeedback to both students and the teacher/professor. This feedback can be the mostsignificant change to teaching since moveable type. In addition clickers increase studentengagement with all material in a class. Not surprisingly, every year there is morequantitative evidence of the value of clickers and richer descriptions of how clickers canbe used. This presentation does add to that evidence and those descriptions, but the paper’sfocus is at a higher level—how and why can clickers qualitatively change your classroom.And how does/can that impact your career—including the promotion and tenure process.This is supported with anecdotal evidence gathered by professors whose clickerexperience ranges from using for their first course to 25 years of use in a variety ofclasses. Our central thesis is that clickers can change the lecture hall from the typicalmonologue with questions to a dialogue focused on learning. As a simple example,consider how clickers can surmount the common reluctance of international students tospeak up after a lifetime of rote-based instruction. As another example, who is providingmore value added, the professor presenting another example like the one in the text or theprofessor who is responding to a common misunderstanding held by numerous students. The dialogue changes how both students and faculty approach the material and whatboth learn from the classroom and about the material. Simply presenting or watching thepresentation is not the best learning mode. Not surprisingly, if both students and facultyare learning more—both are better positioned for future courses and careers. At most institutions faculty members want to be recognized as a good, excellent, oroutstanding teacher. (We do acknowledge that there are some cases where excellentteaching is interpreted as a lack of focus on grant money and research, which is bad forone’s career.) We have observed that department chairs and deans do hear about and areinfluenced by students talking about how much more they’re learning and how muchmore they like the classes of Professor X. This can help with promotion and tenure, or itmay give that faculty member more influence on the decision of what classes they teach. Finally, we suggest that one of the best reasons to use clickers is that they can maketeaching a lot more fun. Instead of focusing on covering a chapter’s worth of material, itis possible to focus on maximizing what students learn in the classroom and the course.
Eschenbach, T., & Lewis, N., & Nicholls, G. M., & Pallis, J. M. (2013, June), The Impact of Clickers on Your Classroom and Your Career Paper presented at 2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia. https://peer.asee.org/22590
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