Quick Blog post today about technology in the classroom. Technology when scaffolded into a classroom environment can provide an immense amount of value in helping students to learn but to also engage. Over my 15 years in higher education I have seen many technologies which have bought an innovative slant to the teaching and learning process. One of the best ones I have used is a little known tool called Socrative.
Socrative is a interactive quiz tool which can be used in your lectures or seminars, it has a few novel features which bring a certain interactivity and dare I say “fun” to your class! Socrative works on the concept of a room, you as the educator have access to the room where you can add and setup a quiz in a variety of formats and settings. When you have created and configured the room and the quiz you then invite students via unique a code to enter your room and engage with your content. You can post this code in your VLE or in your lecture slides.
Socrative can be used in a variety of scenarios, I myself have used socrative in a lecture to reinforce learning, as part of formative assessment or to give class based feedback on an assignment that has been returned to students. In every scenario students have loved it, commenting on:
“can we use them again”
“thats the best lecture I have had in ages”
It is a very flexible tool and can be used without the purchase of additional hardware such as clickers or remotes which can be very expensive (£3000 +). This is very much a BYOD (Bring your own device) piece of kit, all students need is access to a mobile phone and the internet. As the teacher you can control the flow of questions and give feedback from your own lecture PC or Laptop.
There are also some novel twists to the traditional quiz based format, you could setup a quiz where students can race each other via spaceships or racing cars, the first student to complete all the questions is the winner. This can be a bit frantic and it may mean that you lose control of the class for a little bit, but it all adds to the fun.
There are lots of things to do in the classroom with this tool, but overall the best thing is that its free. All you need to do is create a account or use your Gmail account. In the view of this academic its a simple tool that can bring value if utilised correctly.