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Student Response System

The UWW Learning Technology Center, in collaboration with other UWS campuses (UWM, Eau Claire, Oshkosh), has been awarded a Curricular Redesign Grant to investigate the use of Student Response Systems.

What are Student Response Systems? Student Response System technology (SRS or "clicker" systems)allows instructors to interact directly with their students during large lecture classes. When presented with a question, the student presses a button on a wireless, hand-held response pad or "clicker", which sends either an infrared or radio signal to a receiver attached to a computer at the front of the classroom. The computer records and/or displays the response per the instructor’s preference.

How can Student Response Systems improve instruction? The purpose of this technology is to help keep students engaged throughout the class period and to allow instructors to quickly assess what parts of a lecture students have absorbed. For instance, an instructor can pause and ask a question, record the students' responses, then use the answers to target misunderstandings or emphasize important points that may have been missed. An instructor in the sciences could ask a question testing students' understanding of inference, deduction or experimental technique. In the social sciences, an instructor could poll students during a lecture and perform real time correlations among their answers to a range of questions -- e.g., does our race or gender influence our views on specific social issues?

The grant includes stipends for faculty participants as well as other forms of pedagogical and technical support for those interested in trying out "clickers" in the coming year.

Each faculty participant will be expected to attend a meeting and a training session in July (dates TBD), and work on the redesign of a designated course during July and August. The redesigned course, which should include substantial use of the Clicker throughout the semester, is expected to be delivered during the Fall 2005 Semester (but may continue through the spring semester). Participants will attend regular meetings during the semester with other participants at UWW, as well as those on other campuses, to exchange ideas and share experiences. During the spring semester, participants will write a narrative report on the results of their project, and participate in a global assessment report on the project designed by the LTCs. Participants may be invited to present their findings at a UWS conference. Participants will be awarded $1500 upon completion of the project.