Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Teach 180: Plickers (Day 14)

Today in Calculus we did some review for our test on Probability by using Plickers.  I use it as a type
of formative assessment - a way for me to get a sense of what the class knows and doesn't know.  Plus it is a way for students themselves as individuals to see what they know and don't know.

There are several benefits to Plickers.  First,
students aren't on a computer with other tabs or windows open to distract them.  Second, it is easy to encourage them to work together.  When we use Kahoot, it is about competition and getting your answer in first, even if that means guessing and not really understanding the problem.

When I scan the class using the app on my phone, I can immediately see how students did.  Green means the student answered correctly and red means the student answered incorrectly.  I can say something like, "It looks like many of you understand what you are doing", or "We may need to review this one." as I scan the room.  If a student changes his or her answer, I can quickly scan that student's plicker card again.  A second chance to re-enter an answer can't happen in Kahoot.

Finally, I can print off individual student results based on the plicker number I have assigned to him or her.  And here is a partial summary of my results from today.  Notice that some students did very well (their names are cut off the left side of the screenshot, but you can see the scores) and some questions were easier for the class as a whole than others.

Tomorrow I'll give students their individual one page report that shows how they they did on each of the seven questions.  They can use these results as they study individually for the upcoming test.

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