Loyola U Chicago Points to iclicker for Class Response
- By Dian Schaffhauser
Following an 18-month evaluation of classroom response systems, Loyola University Chicago has begun using iclickers to increase student participation in classes. iclicker, originally designed by four University of Illinois professors and owned by Macmillan, provides a remote control-like device that allows students to provide feedback or respond to questions posed by faculty members. Faculty can integrate the questions into their course management materials; once a question has been answered by the class, the instructor can display results.
"Ultimately we selected iclicker because of its simplicity of design, pedagogy, and purpose," said Carol Scheidenhelm, director of Loyola's Office of Learning Technologies and Assessment. "While the other systems had more advanced features, our users determined they would not find these functions pedagogically helpful. Iclicker is easy to use and is not awkward to hold, making it a more transparent technology. The days of passive lectures are waning; students expect more from their courses than to sit and take notes. Learning styles are changing and teaching methods are evolving to accommodate the needs of our current students. Iclickers are a step in the right direction, enabling instructors to involve students and get them excited about learning."
The university, with 15,600 students, will roll out the campus-wide adoption of iclicker in the fall 2009 term.
Dian Schaffhauser is a senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal and Campus Technology. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @schaffhauser.