TurningTechnologies-ClickersIf you are planning to use clickers in SUMMER 2014, please visit the clicker registration page (linked below) to register your classes by MAY 1, 2014.

If you are planning to use clickers in your FALL 2014 classes, please visit the clicker registration page (linked below) to register your classes by JUNE 1, 2014.

(If you are using clickers for both Summer AND Fall 2014, please visit the clicker registration page linked above by May 1, 2014.)

This information helps EdTech prepare the classrooms for clicker technology and also alerts the bookstore about the number of clickers to purchase.

If you haven’t used clickers before and would like more information, please contact Educational Technology at or 573-341-4131.

Thanks for your assistance!


  • IT will be updating TurningPoint on all classroom computers to version 5.3 for Summer/Fall 2014. There are no real noticeable changes.
    • Students can visit the Walk-in Center on the first floor of the Library. It only takes a few seconds to perform the upgrade.

Clickers – Student attendance device (SAD)

clickers-iconStudent Response Device

The use of clickers is much more than as an attendance device. Students frantically enter the classroom to find a clicker slide on the screen waiting for them to respond to the question. The slide may have a relevant question pertaining to material or concepts covered in prior lectures, but after answering the question the student’s results are only used to give them credit for being in class. There is nothing wrong with this, but I say clickers are an awesome tool with which to engage students during your class period. So you want to engage students in your class, but are not sure how to go about it. Here I will discuss some of the techniques our faculty use with clickers to engage students during class.

Concept Understanding

The first technique is to make sure students are grasping the concepts covered either through readings, videos or prior class periods.  This could be in the form of well worded challenging multiple-choice or short answer questions for example. These are designed to make the student think and analyze the material about the important learning outcomes before answering the question. Instructors also use these questions to reveal misconceptions before moving on. This feedback is both important for the students and the instructor.  For instructors, the results may mean the material wasn’t covered well and a new approach is needed. For students, their immediate feedback may mean they need to study the concept more before tackling more challenging material.

Peer instruction

This technique is used to get students discussing the concepts and learning outcomes prior to answering the clicker question.  This technique is great for classes that are based on discussion or reflection.  The clicker device is a way to engage students in their learning by posing questions the students respond using the device.  The class results are shown, but without showing the correct answer if there is one. The instructor then lets the students discuss amongst themselves in small groups for a short period and the students resubmit an answer to the question. During this process the students are learning from each other to better understand the material presented.  If you want more information about Peer Instruction see:

Exam review

Using your course learning outcomes to create challenging conceptual questions to review prior to an exam is another technique in using clickers. Instructors have constructed questions that provide the student an idea of what concepts are covered on the exam. Depending on how well the student performs gives them an indication of what they need to go back and review prior to the actual exam. This is not teaching to the test, but provides a focus for the student’s shortcomings in understanding the concepts and material. If there is a large discrepancy in the results, then using the Peer Instruction technique, list above, can assist the learning process for students.

Missouri University of Science and Technology has on average about 30 to 35 faculty using the student response device or software to engage their students during the class period.  For more information on clickers use this link:

EdTech Newsletter for Fall Semester 2013 is Now Available!

Edward_Tech-02-sm1Ed Said, Educational Technology’s Fall 2013 newsletter is now available. The past several months have resulted in a number of changes in the services and support offered by Educational Technology. At the very least, the following services have been upgraded or added over the summer:

  • Blackboard – New “inline grading” feature.
  • TurningPoint – Unified interface that integrates PowerPoint Polling, Anywhere Polling, and Self-Paced Polling.
  • Kaltura – Upload streaming media files into Blackboard.

The newsletter also discusses the effective use of blogs in a course, additional student-focused resources that can be added to a Blackboard course, tips for managing online discussions, and more.

Download the current version of the newsletter today!

Back-to-School Technology Workshops on August 5, 7, and 9!

back-to-school-workshop-logoEducational Technology (EdTech) will be hosting a series of back-to-school technology workshops on August 5, 7, and 9. These workshops will be held in Centennial Hall Room 105, starting at 9 a.m. (see detailed schedule below).

Topics will include Blackboard, Google Apps for Education, Clickers/TurningPoint, Tegrity, and more… To accommodate the schedules of busy instructors, EdTech will present a series of 50-minute sessions to introduce the technology.

NO REGISTRATION REQUIRED FOR THE WORKSHOPS! Simply choose a time/date/topic that interests you from the list below and show up!

NOTE: Because multiple workshop topics will be taking place at the same time in the same room, it will not be possible to record the event.

Here’s how each workshop will operate:

  1. Interested attendees attend a workshop of their choosing at their convenience.
  2. The room will be divided into several “pods”, where each pod will cover one of the subtopics listed below.

EXAMPLE: An instructor interested in learning about Blackboard Assessments can attend the workshop on Monday, August 5 at 9 a.m. and visit the Assessments pod. If he or she wants to find out more about Grade Center, he or she can stick around at 10 a.m. on August 5 and move to the Grade Center pod or choose a different Blackboard workshop later in the week. EdTech will have workers on hand to guide attendees to the pod covering the technology in which they are most interested.

The schedule of the workshops is detailed below:

Monday, August 5, 9 a.m. Blackboard 1
Monday, August 5, 10 a.m. Blackboard 1
Monday, August 5, 1 p.m. “Other” Technologies 2
Monday, August 5, 2 p.m. “Other” Technologies 2
Wednesday, August 7, 9 a.m. Google Apps for Education 3
Wednesday, August 7, 10 a.m. Google Apps for Education 3
Wednesday, August 7, 1 p.m. Blackboard 1
Wednesday, August 7, 2 p.m. Blackboard 1
Friday, August 9, 9 a.m. “Other” Technologies 2
Friday, August 9, 10 a.m. “Other” Technologies 2
Friday, August 9, 1 p.m. Google Apps for Education 3
Friday, August 9, 2 p.m. Google Apps for Education 3



  1. Blackboard subtopics will include: Orientation, Organization, Assessments, Grade Center, Tools, and other Content Options.
  2. “Other” Technologies subtopics includes: Adobe Connect, Tegrity, Clickers/TurningPoint, Kaltura, and basic classroom technology.
  3. Google Apps for Education subtopics includes: Sites, Drive, Plus / Hangouts, Groups, and Voice

NOTE: These workshops are intended to provide a general overview of the technology supported by EdTech. Further assistance can be obtained by scheduling a one-on-one consultation with EdTech support staff or by attending an EdTech U event later in the semester. EdTech U is offered on Thursdays, from Noon – 2 p.m. in Interdisciplinary Engineering Room 105.

If you are having a technology issue, you can also contact the IT Help Desk at 573-341-HELP or online at

FLC — Using TurningKey for Testing

When: Friday, September 9, 2011 at noon

Where: Centennial Hall 104

Presenter: Dr. Dan Reardon, Assistant Professor of English and Technical Communication

Sponsored by:
CERTI and Educational Technology

Dessert and drinks provided — feel free to bring your own lunch.

Instructors will discover how to use TurningKey software in conjunction with clickers to give paper-based, self-paced tests that can be graded instantly, showing the instructor individual results for each student. Reports can easily be generated for valuable feedback, assisting instructors in aligning course and unit objectives with evaluation and assessment procedures.

Sample Technology Supported by EdTech

I recently had the opportunity to demonstrate a variety of technologies that EdTech supports to several members of the faculty on campus. I put together a few presentations and gave them a brief overview of what we had to offer, based on a request from the department chair. EdTech would be more than happy to give other departments the same information through a technology demonstration or other forum.

Here is the sample technology that I demonstrated. Note that there are other technologies that we also support.

SynchronEyes — Allows instructor to control/observe/share machines in a computer lab with the students.


TurningPoint/Clickers — Personal response devices (clickers) give students and instructors immediate feedback during lecture.


Respondus — Test creation software that interfaces with Word and Blackboard to facilitate getting tests and other assessment tools online inside a Blackboard course.


Blogs and Wikis — Students can continue to learn and collaborate in an asynchronous learning environment, moderated by the instructor. Blogs and wikis are available in Blackboard.


New CLICKER / TURNINGPOINT Features Compatible with Blackboard

turningpoint-blackboard.pngEdTech has recently turned on the Blackboard Wizard in TurningPoint. This allows TurningPoint features to be compatible with Blackboard. Specifically, TurningPoint can now do the following tasks:

  • Register clickers in Blackboard — students can now register their clickers in Blackboard instead of having to register their clickers at the Bookstore. Students simply need to login to their clicker-enabled course and register their clicker for that course. (Accessed through Blackboard.)
  • Import participation lists from Blackboard — Instructors can download participation lists directly from Blackboard into TurningPoint. This makes is easier for instructors to keep their participation lists up to date as students add/drop clicker courses. (Accessed through TurningPoint.)
  • Export session data to Blackboard — Instead of a complicated series of steps to move your session data from a TurningPoint Excel spreadsheet into the Blackboard Grade Center, you can export your session data directly to the Bb Grade Center, creating new columns for each session you want to export. This makes it much, much easier to integrate your “clicker points” with your other participation grade points in Blackboard. (Accessed through TurningPoint.)

Click one of the links above to view instructions on how to perform
each of the three tasks — Registering clickers, importing participation lists, and exporting session data.

Feel free to contact EdTech if you have any questions or concerns about any of these three new processes for managing clickers / TurningPoint.

TLT Conference 2009: Dr. Judith Sebesta

Using Clickers in the Arts & Humanities

[Evaluate this presentation]

This presentation will provide ideas for using clickers in classes in
the Arts and Humanities, drawing on examples from the presenter’s
experience teaching a large Introduction to Theater course. Attendees
will have the chance to try out the clickers and share ideas for their
use in similar courses.


Smart phone clickers in the classroom

iphone-clicker.pngJennifer Shaner, our campus CERTI Coordinator recently brought to my attention an article she found in the Chronicle of Higher Education about how students at Abilene Christian University (ACU) use iPhones for their clicker-enabled classes.

Apparently, the iPhone application for supporting clickers was developed in-house by ACU programmers. The iPhones (and iPod Touch units) were distributed to all of the first-year students.

However, ACU is not the first, nor the only university to experiment with using smart-phone technology to support clickers. Missouri S&T is also piloting the use of smart-phone technology in conjunction with an application provided by TurningPoint to use integrated clicker/smart-phones in the classroom. The main advantage to using a smart-phone is that many students already have smart-phones, so they would simply need to obtain a copy of the clicker application to run on their smart-phone. It also eliminates the need for students to carry multiple devices, instead relying on a single device which they also use for many of their other communication tasks like email, text-messaging, and web-browsing (and, on occasion, calling their friends and family).

The downside to insisting on using smart-phones for clickers is that not all students can afford to have a smart-phone. The technology may not be available for some brands of smart-phones or on certain smart-phone plans. It is certainly possible to have both standard RF clickers and smart-phone clickers in the same classroom.

One of the more interesting aspects of ACU’s implementation is the ability to display student responses in a “word cloud”, which means students and instructors can see the responses as a random cloud of words (see the image above for an example of what a word cloud might look like). This doesn’t sound particularly useful at first, but the words that students submitted the most will be displayed in larger font. Words that have only one or two submissions will be in correspondingly smaller font. Thus, if you are asking an opinion-oriented question about a topic, you can see at a glance which option students seem to prefer over others. For instance, the word cloud in the image above might reflect the responses to the question, “What is one of the most important events of the 20th Century?”

You can, of course, achieve the same result using a more “standard” clicker question with a bar graph–the word cloud just looks different and may work more effectively for some audiences.


Educational Technology Offers Clicker Training for Instructors on Thursday, June 26, 2008

On Thursday, June 26, 2008, Educational Technology will be hosting two training sessions for instructors who use clickers (or will be using clickers) to teach courses this fall.
IT will be releasing TurningPoint 2008 in conjunction with Office 2007 this fall, so EdTech strongly recommends ALL clicker faculty attend at least one of the two clicker training sessions (we will schedule more if the sessions fill up).
Basic Clicker/TurningPoint Training
Basic Clicker/TurningPoint training is for instructors who have never used clickers before. You will learn how to create clicker slides in TurningPoint, how to run a show during class, what reports are available and more.
Date: Thursday, June 26, 2008
Time: 10 a.m. – Noon
Location: 103 Library
Advanced Clicker/TurningPoint Training
Advanced Clicker/TurningPoint training is available only for instructors who have already taught at least one clicker-enhanced course. You will learn about conditional branching techniques, how to set up course standards for your clicker course so that you can verify if student are meeting your established academic objectives, and you will learn how to create multi-answer questions.
Date: Thursday, June 26, 2008
Time: 2 – 4 p.m.
Location: 103 Library
Register for Clicker Training
To sign up for one or both of the clicker training sessions, follow the steps below:
1. Go to
2. Click Register for Training.
3. Type in your Missouri S&T userid and password and click OK.
4. Click on the training session you want to sign up for.
5. Click Register.