Give your learners the extra cognitive boost - box them
Give Your Learners the Extra
Cognitive Boost: Box Them!
Inge de Waard
3 November 2010 – 11 am – 11.40
Click fast and win …
a 4GB USB stick at the end of this
session! And a priceless hug from the
• Audience Response system (ARS)
• Voting boxes
• Different brands
• Mobile phone polls for online courses
• Use a web-based survey or quiz software (e.g.
polleverywhere or surveygizmo).
• After you have build your quiz or survey you either
make a QR-code for it (easy to get users to the right
location via their mobile), or you send them a link (use
software that shortens links like TinyURL, for easy
• And ask them to take the survey… simultaneously
Let’s go old school & raise hands
• Who likes cats?
• Who likes dogs?
• Who has not raised
Difficult to keep track as a teacher: after the
course no useful post-data
(unlike interactions in LMS’s which can help adjusting training or learning)
As trainers/teachers we want to
interact & know what is going on
Pedagogical reasons to use
• Increases interactivity in the classroom or learning
• It can be used individually or in group (stimulating peer-
• All of the learners must reflect before using it.
• Reflection increases cognitive impulse in all the students
• Thinking is out in the open, no more hiding behind peers
Let’s look at 12 benefits!
What does it feel like?
Take your boxes, voting begins…
1. Use it to: gather live information
Create questions and offer them to the learners
in order to get immediate feedback
What is your gender?
2. Use it to: assess prior knowledge
Picture by ComedyNose TonyNetone
What do you use your mobile for?
4. Augmented reality
Select All That
Multiple responses: What do you use your mobile for?
3. Use it to: recall questions from
earlier learning prerequisites
Who has read the material?
Followed by a quick assessment
Picture by TonyNetone
4. Use it to: adjust
teaching speed and topics
Immediate trainer/instructor feedback
Great overall response => move on
Poor overall response => dig into the
content, discuss, adjust
5. Use it to: assess what is learned
after the class or course
If a sub-topic scored low, it can be picked up
again or used in an online spaced education
topic. Understanding can be compared.
6. Use it to: predict the outcome of
an event & link to more information
7. Use it to: let learners indicate
when they finished with a task
• Shows when an assignment or task is completed
• This can be used to motivate completion by
8. Use it to: vote on topics for
• Readiness for organizational change can be
• Group discussions can be given a direction by
peers (more participatory topics)
• Vote on which learner’s work is excelling (best
instructional video, best showcase)
In order of importance rank your
mobile learning interests?
1 2 3 4 5
2. Mobile Courses
9. Use it to: evaluate a class or
• Instantaneous evaluation connects with the
quality of immediate feedback
• This can also be used for formatively evaluating
a course or a teaching experiment
10. Use it to: jump to another
viewpoint of a topic
Whenever learners indicate the previous
content was unclear (= measure
11. Use it for Socratic questioning
• You do need to link names to the boxes:
“Tell me, why do you think mobile learning
is on the rise?”
12. Use it to: start a contest, yes!
Divide all learners into meaningful groups
(depending on the goal of the contest)
Running against one another
Or turning off boxes with each wrong
• Give an extra point to the most dynamic voter
• Real time tracking to give them an insight of who
knows what and where they fit in
What is the adult attention span at
the end of a standard lecture?
1. 3-4 minutes
2. 7-10 minutes
3. 12-15 minutes
4. 18-20 minutes
5. More than 20 minutes
6. I don’t know
0% 0% 0%0%0%0%
The "Change-Up" in Lectures
Joan Middendorf and Alan Kalish
Teaching Resources Center
Published NTLF, January 2006, Vol. 5, #2
So: Increase the quality of your
learners, and box them
• A broken voting box
• One learner having access to many boxes
• ID connection fails or is not put in correctly
• But overall, it is safe and quick
References for boxing learner’s
• Kay, R.H., Lesage, A. (2009) A strategic assessment of audience
response systems used in higher education. Australasian Journal
of Educational Technology, 2009, 25(2), 235-249.
• Cain, J., Black, E.P., Rohr J. (2009). An Audience Response
System Strategy to Improve Student Motivation, Attention, and
Feedback. Am J Pharm Educ. 2009 April 7; 73(2): 21 :
• Derek Bruff from the Vanderbilt University, Essays on Teaching
Excellence: Toward the Best in the Academy, Volume 21,
Number 3, 2009-10. A publication of The Professional &
Organizational Development Network in Higher Education