The introduction of a group project assignment can be met with a chorus of groans from your students. Group projects are often necessary for our classes. They’re also good preparation for your students’ futures in the workplace. Most students picture their future work life as highly independent but the truth is, most jobs rely on employees working in groups constantly. Here’s how you can use iClicker to manage group projects more effectively and help your students value the learning experience more. Sorting Into Groups
Instructors often turn to group work when they want their students to gain experience collaborating with new people. However, when students self-select their partners, they generally pick the same students with whom they feel most familiar. Using iClicker to form groups can shake up a classroom and inspire new relationships in the classroom.
Try an activity where you open a multiple-choice poll and click on the results before your students vote. Challenge your students to “balance the bars” Once the bars are balanced (and this can take a while!) ask all the students who voted A to gather in one spot, all the students who voted B to gather in another spot, and so on. This can break your class up in a new way and easily segue into a more dynamic group.
iClicker is Ideal for Groups of Two
Peer Instruction (PI) is a proven way to move students from passive observation to active learning. With this student-centered type of instruction, students learn by explaining core concepts to each other under the guidance of their instructor.
Encourage students to Think, Pair, Share. First, challenge them to Think with an iClicker question. Instead of revealing the correct answer, ask students to Pair with another student who has a different answer. Challenge students to come to a consensus on the correct answer, then Share their results with the class.
When you display the results the first time, instruct your students to find peers who picked a different answer. This enlivens your classrooms and encourages students to make connections with more of their classmates.
Managing Polling Activities in Groups
Often students work on problem sets or complex challenges in group settings. Unfortunately, some groups see finishing the exercises as the goal instead of exploring the materials deeply and coming to a consensus. On the other hand, some groups dawdle and fail to finish the work due to shyness or other factors. With iClicker, your students work on one question at a time, keeping the class in sync with each other.
To keep answers from the same group together, use Short Answer as your response type and ask students to respond with their group name at the start of their response. This will easily group responses together while requiring every student to stay engaged in the group activity.
Using Assignments for Group Work
iClicker Assignments makes it easy to keep group work separate from the polling questions you’re already asking in your classes. With Assignments, groups of students are able to work through a set of iClicker questions on their devices at their own pace.
Students can work through a lab activity, answer a set of discussion questions, or conduct a peer review of course writing and they can do it in groups, no matter where the group is located. iClicker Assignments work for groups in your physical classroom or with breakout groups online!
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Need to keep your iClicker question screenshots and results under wraps until after all your class sections have met for the week? We have all the details you need to control exactly how you hide and share your Polling details.
Before Class: Turn Off Screenshot Sharing Sign in to the iClicker Cloud instructor website, select your course, and select Settings.
Select the Polling tab of your course settings. Under Sharing, select Do not send a picture of my screen. You can also select Do not send results. The changes you make to your settings will apply to all future iClicker class sessions. When you are satisfied with your choices, click Save. Do this for each relevant iClicker Cloud course. Note: You may also wish to keep Polling questions ungraded until all class sections have met. You can grade questions after class through your Class History.
This is what students will see in class when you ask Polling questions. They will not receive a screenshot of your screen with the question (however, they will receive a screenshot if you choose to ask a Target question). They will see a message that the question was "Hidden by Instructor."
After Class/After All Class Sections Have Met: Turn On Screenshot Sharing Once you are ready to share questions screenshots and/or results with your students, go to the Class History for each course and click on the poll you wish to share.
Click the three dots in the upper-right corner to open Poll Settings.
In the Poll Settings window, check the appropriate boxes to share questions images and/or results with the students in this course. Click Save. Do this for each relevant section of your course.
After you have shared your screenshots with all of your class sections, students will be able to review those polling questions and bookmark them to use in the Study Tools section of their app.
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Finding ways to engage students in online & hybrid environments is more important than ever. And while teaching online offers challenges, active learning and engagement tools like iClicker better support students’ sense of support and collaboration, helping them to be successful and remain invested in learning. Check out this quick guide on how iClicker can foster engagement with your students and hear how it's already impacted other instructors' classrooms!
Download the iClicker & Student Engagement for Remote Learning Guide
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iClicker offers student engagement for every scenario, whether you teach in-person, hybrid, or completely virtual classes or are unsure how your term will end up. In-Person If you’re teaching in-person, it may have been a while since you’ve used iClicker in the classroom! Remember that you can enable physical remotes in iClicker Cloud—and new remotes now come with 5-year student app subscriptions for ultimate flexibility. We also offer Attendance with an optional geolocation setting to help get students to class and our Focus feature helps students stay on task once there. Watch our Back to School webinar for a full refresher of what’s new in iClicker Cloud.
Hybrid and Virtual
iClicker works just as well in hybrid or virtual classes, so in case you have to pivot from in-person learning midway through the term, you can continue to use iClicker Cloud. If you’re using iClicker Classic, you can still use the same instructor software—simply enable the student app in your Mobile settings. Here are some tips for a seamless transition to hybrid or virtual learning:
Remember that bases and remotes only work in face-to-face classes. However, even if your students previously used remotes, they should already have their iClicker accounts set up and should already be enrolled in your course. If they purchased a new iClicker remote, they also would have received a five-year digital subscription upon registering their remote in the student app. Students will simply open up your course in the mobile or web app and respond to questions there, whether synchronously or asynchronously.
If you had set a location requirement for in-person attendance, you’ll need to turn that off in your settings to let your students join class from wherever they may be.
You may also wish to disable Focus, as it tracks the time students spend outside of the iClicker app. This is especially helpful for students who only have one device they are using to both access class via a video conferencing app AND participate in the iClicker student app.
iClicker’s new Assignments activity is a great way to engage students as they watch recorded lectures, but it’s also great for pre-class and post-class questions and group work/breakout activities in synchronous classes.
Read through our remote instruction checklist or watch our virtual classroom video to learn more about how iClicker works with your video conferencing and presentation tools.
Watch our on-demand webinar for more great tips on how to supercharge student engagement in hybrid classes.
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Hispanic Heritage Month starts in the US on September 15th and runs to October 15th. What’s the reason for the unique timing? The month-long observation starts on the 15th to correspond with the anniversary of independence in five Central American countries—Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua. More trivia awaits you and your students in this month’s deck!
Download the Slide Deck Here!
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Many campus LMS admins have recently completed setting up Roster & Grade Sync, our most advanced integration option, which allows instructors to sync their rosters from their LMS for easy student onboarding and sync iClicker grades to their LMS gradebook. Roster & Grade Sync is available for Canvas, Blackboard, and Brightspace by D2L, but some institutions are using a different version of grade sync. Here’s how to figure out if Roster & Grade Sync has been made available to you. From the iClicker Cloud instructor website, navigate to your course and click on Settings, then select the Integrations tab. If Roster & Grade Sync is enabled at your institution, your Integrations settings will look like the image below with your own LMS name and icon and a Connect to... button. Learn more about how to set up Roster & Grade Sync.
If, on the other hand, your Integrations settings resemble the image below, with a Grade Sync Integration on/off toggle button, you may still be able to take advantage of an LMS integration (and this applies to all Moodle and Sakai schools). Check with your LMS admin to see if LTI grade sync is enabled. If you’re using LaunchPad, you can also switch the toggle button on and select that option from the drop-down menu, then follow the steps to integrate iClicker with LaunchPad without LMS admin setup.
Finally, if you’re using Achieve and already have grade sync set up with your LMS, you can include iClicker scores in the grades that are transferred to your LMS (no admin setup required!). Click the Sync iClicker button in your Achieve gradebook and follow the steps to connect your iClicker course.
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Here’s a pro tip from iClicker veterans that we like to share at the start of each term: practice makes perfect. As an iClicker instructor, there’s no limit to the courses you create for yourself, so we always recommend that new instructors create a practice or sandbox course that is separate from any “official” courses (and not visible to any students). You can also take advantage of the free iClicker instructor subscription to our student app to step through the complete classroom experience from both the instructor and student perspectives.
Use our new video with our step-by-step guide to get comfortable running class sessions with yourself (or maybe a colleague!), before going live with your students on the first day of class:
Video: How iClicker Works
Article: How to Run Practice Sessions in iClicker Cloud
As you familiarize yourself with iClicker, our checklists will walk you through everything else you may want to consider as you create your courses for the new academic year, from setting upgrade sync with your Learning Management System to onboarding your students:
Checklist: Getting Started with iClicker Cloud
Checklist: Using iClicker for Remote Instruction
Checklist: Getting Started with iClicker Cloud Attendance-only Courses
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The return to campus is just moments away! We’ve collected our best tried-and-true tips for student onboarding that you’ll want to keep in mind as you welcome students back to the classroom. We’ve also created a deck of icebreaker activities that you can use to get to know your students while they get comfortable with iClicker.
Check Out Our Ice-Breaker Deck
1. Message students early (and often!) We’ve created lots of resources that make it easy for you to communicate with your students about how to get ready to use iClicker in your course. These iClicker Cloud Student Registration Overview & Resources include syllabus language and first-day-of-class resources that you can use to set your students up for success. We even have guides for instructors who will be teaching virtually, so be sure to explore! 2. Explain your teaching rationale for using iClicker to your students. Students get more out of iClicker when they know why you’re requiring it in their class. Let students know that iClicker use leads to better classroom engagement, a significant rise in student confidence, and an increase in end-of-class grades. 3. Keep stakes low during your first polling sessions. Students are quick to catch on to how iClicker works on their laptops, tablets or phones. However, the enrollment of your class may shift in the first weeks of class, which can create grading headaches down the line. Students may also need to become familiar with joining the wifi in your classroom, causing them to miss a question or two. Here’s information you can pass along to your students to help them troubleshoot their connection. 4. Using Enhanced Grade Sync? Introducing Roster and Grade Sync! The new Roster and Grade Sync (RGS) is now available for Blackboard, Brightspace, or Canvas once it has been set up by your LMS administrator. With RGS, you can pull your roster into your iClicker Cloud course with no additional linking steps for students. Take a look at our support article on transitioning from iClicker's Enhanced Grade Sync to Roster & Grade Sync for more information.
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We’re making things even simpler! Later this summer, the award-winning mobile student response system, iClicker Reef will be renamed the iClicker student app . Why the change?
Multiple surveys and customer interviews showed that the ‘Reef’ brand name can cause confusion for customers who frequently do not associate Reef with iClicker, or do not readily identify Reef as the student mobile app for iClicker.
What does the name change mean for me?
For educators: Over the coming weeks we will be updating all of our customer-facing training and support materials to reflect the name change to the iClicker student app. Any links that currently use iClicker Reef will be re-routed to the appropriate webpage.
For students: The directions for how to download the iClicker student mobile app will be updated to reflect the name change. All of this will be provided over the coming weeks in preparation for fall classes.
When will this change occur? The formal switch is scheduled for early-to-mid August 2021. We will continue to update you as we prepare for this change.
Please let us know if you have any questions. We look forward to continuing to deliver simple, flexible, pedagogically-sound solutions for your fall 2021 classes. This new change to the student mobile app naming is one small piece of our efforts.
Click here to connect with a Student Engagement Specialist to discuss how to make your fall classes as engaging as possible
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The temperatures are rising across the country. As you and your students sweat through the term (if you’re lucky enough to be teaching this summer!), consider treating everyone to some fun iClicker questions about ice cream.
Check Out the July Trivia Deck
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Thank you to everyone who joined us for the 2021 Higher Education Assessment Conference hosted by New England College! And now… drumroll please… the winners of our sweepstakes, represented by their institutions!
Lehigh University (PA)
Juniata College (PA)
Ball State University (IN)
Midland University (NE)
Thanks to everyone who entered! If you have not checked out the presentation decks and session recordings from this year’s Higher Ed Assessment Conference, we invite you to check them out! Here you will find:
Assessments that Drive Desired Outcomes: Early Alerts, Interventions and Improving Student Success - Recording. In this session, Glenn Skaggs and Mandy Shaffer demonstrated how institutional outcomes could be improved by pairing brief retention surveys with program assessments.
Assessments that Create Connections: Fostering Deep Learning in Person and Online - Recording. In this session, Dr. Edna Ross explored the ways that student engagement tools and best practices can have a real-time impact on insight and analytics that improve key student retention factors. Watch the recording to learn more about how to use polling and asynchronous quizzes to facilitate active learning, gain student feedback, and foster connections whether online or in-person.
Infographics on using storytelling to share compelling assessment data.
Tips for engaging students online and in HyFlex courses.
On-Demand webinars and other resources.
In the meantime, if you are interested in utilizing assessment solutions to improve student engagement and outcomes, connect now with an Assessment specialist! Congrats again to the winners!
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Are you looking for ways to make your class sessions more interactive but unsure where to find the time? Join Natalie Dougall as she shares ways you can easily incorporate iClicker polling activities into your classroom without sacrificing a lot of valuable class time or wildly altering lesson plans you’ve spent years perfecting. Natalie will also outline Macmillan resources instructors can use to easily turn their students from passive observers into active learners.
Access the Webinar Here!
Access Webinar On-Demand
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We heard you and we are making things even simpler! We’re pleased to announce that by August 2021 iClicker Reef will be renamed the iClicker student app, helping instructors and students alike to more easily identify iClicker’s mobile/web app for students. The logo above will appear on student app login pages. The ISBNs for your student products will remain the same. Over the next few months, we will be updating all of our instructor- and student-facing training and support materials to reflect the name change to the iClicker student app. Any links that currently use iClicker Reef will be re-routed to the appropriate webpage. If you have created any of your own student-facing materials that mention Reef, replacing the Reef name with “the iClicker student app” will make it easier for your students. We will continue to update you as we prepare for this change— let us know if you have any questions in the meantime!
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