As my readers know, I am a huge fan of the i>clicker audience response system. My students seem to like it, too, but some have complained that they lose the remote or it’s too expensive (our bookstore sells it new for $29). So I was very excited to see that the ever-inventive folks at i>clicker were working on a new app that could be used on a phone or laptop, saving money for the students at the same time as solving the “I lost my clicker” problem.
The new web>clicker will look great on an iPhone!
This morning, i>clicker’s Chad Moeller kindly walked me through the process of how the new web>clicker works with a very helpful WebEx. Daughter Karen, home from her doctoral studies at UT Knoxville, sat in on the WebEx with me, even though it was at 7am our time. I’m hoping Karen will have a chance to use the technology in her teaching, too, although her classes run pretty small (20-25 students or so). I took a screen shot (above) so you can see what the web>clicker registration will look like from the student side. I should have taken a screen shot of the voting part, but didn’t, but the pdf Chad sent me had this image:
Voting with the web>clicker!
I polled my students (all 165 of them) and quite a few of them were interested in using web>clicker instead of the i>clicker. But here’s another issue interested faculty should consider. Our campus tech people are worried that we will overload the wireless system. I think I’ve learned more than I really wanted to know from watching the emails go between i>clicker and our campus ITS. Apparently, our classrooms are not set up for wireless access for more than about 20 simultaneous users, and to add further access would cost money, which of course, California has none of. Apparently, it doesn’t matter if you’re using a phone or a laptop–both tap into the campus wireless system as a default. Fortunately, my poll is showing that we should be okay–My 8am Intro Psych class was the most enthusiastic–24 voted for using web>clicker. Only one person from the 7am class responded (uh oh–not sure what that means for that class), and 7 in my 9am biopsych class were interested.
I’m sure there will be a learning curve with this–it’s quite new from i>clicker’s end, and it’s obviously completely new to me. But I like new things! Hope the students do, too!