According to the Urban Dictionary, a clicker or television remote control is a term that dates back to the late 1960s. The first television remotes made a loud click when buttons were pressed. Apparently the clicking sound sent an audible high-pitched noise to a microphone inside the television which would then change channels or volume. The click was actually a hammer inside the remote that struck a metal tube which made it resonate. Each button on the remote clicker had it’s own tube. I remember first using a remote control at my grandmother’s house. She first got a clicker to watch her “stories” or soap operas (“As The World Turns” was one of her favorites). Instead of getting off the couch to change the channel on the retro analog Zenith model television set nestled in the wood console, the clicker was a new way to skip to another channel during commercial breaks.
Cut to the 21st century and now we have clickers in the classroom. What would our grandparents say? Clickers are fairly new to education and allow teachers to pose questions and get immediate feedback from the entire class. Students have the opportunity to anonymously use clickers and do not need to worry about feeling vulnerable with an answer they may be unsure of. It’s also another tactile device that students may like because of movement and instantaneous response capabilities. I wonder, can clickers encourage students to be more engaged?
Clickers can cost students approximately $25, but some schools, like College of DuPage, have classroom clickers we can borrow through the library. In fact, COD created a Wiki about clickers in the classroom:
College of DuPage has initiated a pilot program to introduce iclicker to faculty and staff; kits are available for checkout through the Library. Library requests for iclicker kits may be made either by phone (ext. 2675), e-mail or online. There are 4 – 50 clicker kits, 9 – 26 clicker kits and 7 – 20 clicker kits (extra clickers available upon request). If you’re not sure what iclicker is, or how you can use it in your class or with your presentation, contact the Help Desk by phone (ext. 4357) or e-mail, or sign up for a TLC class. The TLC can also arrange for group presentations at staff or divisional meetings.
Classroom Response System is a teaching tool used in classrooms and lecture halls. It allows an instructor to poll students during lectures, enabling the instructor to check for understanding and receive immediate feedback on questions.
Some of the features of a Classroom Response System include:
- Classroom attendance can be automated
- Students can respond to questions via remote control
- Responses can be recorded and graded immediately
- Classroom performance statistics can be generated
Compatible with Blackboard
Works with any application (PowerPoint, Word, Excel, PDF’s, etc.)
- iclicker software can be accessed from a flash drive, network drive or any removable media
- PC and Mac compatible
- COMING SOON…..Web>Clicker!