Date: Fri, 12 Nov 2010 08:26:01

Author: --- duffy

Subject: Re: clickers


Sam wrote:
> I've been using i-clicker for the last three years and am quite happy with
> it. SU just sent me a memo after very little consultation that only
> Turning Point be used on campus. Besides being pissed about losing
> control, is there a reason that I be upset about the Turning Point system?
> Anybody use them and have comments?? Easy to use? Bad software? Tech
> support?

Hi Sam,

By the way, congratulations on your Distinguished Service Citation - much

Here at Boston University, we have also adopted the Turning Technologies
clickers as the standard campus-wide, so I have been using them for the
first time this semester after several years of using PRS clickers. I
really have no complaints.

The students register their clickers on-line, and then you download the
roster. The students do this over a couple of weeks at the beginning of
the semester, so, as an instructor, you tend to download and update the
clicker roster several times. That actually worked seamlessly - you just
replace the old roster by the new one, and you're good to go.

I use the Turning Point Anywhere software, which just puts a small window
on top of everything on my desktop. When I'm doing my Keynote presentation
in class, the clicker window sits on top of that, allowing me to start and
stop polling, and to display the results. In theory, there's a way to show
a countdown timer for a particular question, but I haven't figured out how
to make that work.

After each class, I go back and review the clicker session, telling the
software which was the correct answer for each question I asked. After
saving the session, I then import it into Results Manager, a separate
program from Turning Technologies. It gives me a gradebook for my class.
Each student gets a point for each question they answer. You decide what a
correct answer is worth and what an incorrect answer is worth - I give
them a point for any answer, but you don't have to do it that way.

Results Manager is then capable of exporting to various course management
systems. I use WebCT, so it gives me a file with each student's clicker
grade (just a participation grade) that I upload to WebCT. That part is
pretty easy, too.

My previous experience was with PRS - I actually like the Turning
Technology system a little better. I can't comment on how it compares to
iClicker, though. Note that the students can buy a basic RF clicker, or
spend a few extra dollars to get a clicker with an small LCD screen. A
handful of students with the LCD version have had issues with them (at
least one student got a replacement from the company), so you may (if you
can) want to recommend the basic clicker.

Let me know if you have any more questions.


Andrew Duffy
Department of Physics
Boston University

From Fri Nov 12 09:53:01 2010