Student Response System


The Student Response System (SRS) is a classroom technology that provides professors with instant feedback on student responses to in-class questions and quizzes.

Student response technology has proven to be a valuable tool for both teaching and learning, and helps

  • Promote active learning
  • Engage students in the lesson
  • Provide feedback to the instructor
  • Provide feedback to the students
  • Boost in-class confidence and participation

Students

Information

Using the student response system (SRS) gives your professor instant feedback about student responses to in‐class questions and quizzes. The SRS can be used via a handheld clicker device or an app on your smart phone or laptop.

Using SRS in class means that

  • You stay engaged
  • You can participate more actively in class
  • Professors can review or focus on the areas where students are unclear
  • You get a heads up on what you know and don’t know so well

Access

All incoming freshmen and new transfer students will receive a clicker device and a ResponseWare subscription, regardless of your major or the classes you are taking. The device is yours to keep and will be used in many of your classes at the School of Engineering. Take care not to lose it!

If you did not receive a clicker or subscription as a new student and your professor has informed you that you will be using SRS in class, you may borrow a clicker from the FITL Center for a semester at a time. Bring your class schedule and your student ID to LC 444 to make arrangements to borrow a clicker.

In addition, if you expect to use SRS in many of your classes, you may be interested in purchasing a clicker or subscription. Individual clickers and subscriptions may be purchased through the Turning Technologies Student Store. Please contact tandonSRS@nyu.edu for information about ordering from the store.

Registering your Clicker & Subscription

Once you have received your clicker or subscription, they will need to be registered in NYU Classes. This lets your professor know that you are participating in poll activities and can help you if you lose your clicker.

If you received a ResponseWare subscription, you must activate your subscription by creating an account.

Use

Tandon uses the ResponseCard RF LCD clicker device, which communicates through radio frequency. It is lightweight, compact in size and has a range of 250 feet.

In class, your professor will use the student response system to pose questions and you can enter a response on your clicker or in the app. The professor can also use the student response system to take class attendance.

The clicker is powered by two coin-cell CR2032 (3.0V) lithium batteries. The average battery life is 6 to 12 months. After that time, you will need to purchase replacement batteries. These batteries can be purchased at low cost from electronics retailers like Best Buy and Target, as well as drug stores like Duane Reade, Walgreens, or CVS.

The Student Guide provides detailed information about how the SRS is used at the School of Engineering and what to do if you encounter any difficulty with your clicker or ResponseWare app.

Student Guide (log in with NYU account to view)

Technical Support

For any issue you have with your clicker device or app, whether it be lost, broken or anything else, the first thing to do is notify your professor. If you do not, your responses may not be counted in a response poll. For answers to Frequently Asked Questions, consult the Student Guide.

Lost Clickers

You should notify your professor immediately. After letting them know that your clicker was lost, please stop by our office (LC 444, inside Dibner Library) with a debit or credit card to order your replacement clicker. The ordering process is completed online, so please do not bring cash. We will provide a temporary clicker you can use in class until your new one arrives.

Clickers Not Working

If your clicker is not working properly, you should notify your professor immediately.

Solutions to possible clicker trouble:

  • Wrong RF channel: read the Student Guide for information on how to set the radio frequency channel on your clicker
  • Dead battery: If you have had your clicker for less than 12 months, visit LC 444 to get a replacement battery. If you have had it for more than 12 months, purchase replacement batteries.
  • Broken clicker: email tandonSRS@nyu.edu for technical support

Directions to FITL/LC 444

Enter Dibner Library on the 3rd floor. Take the inside stairs to the upper level and walk to the right. You will see a door marked 444 in the corner.

Downloads

Student Guide

Mobile Polling with ResponseWare


Faculty

Information

The student response system (SRS) was introduced at School of Engineering as the clicker program in Fall 2009. Since then, the program has grown tremendously, and is now actively used in 9 different subject areas.

Like the “Ask the Audience” portion of the popular gameshow Who Wants to be a Millionaire, an instructor can poll the class by posing a multiple choice question, then asking the students to enter a response using their handheld clicker or mobile device device. The results of the poll are then displayed live for the instructor and class to see.

Using SRS in the classroom promotes active learning, engaging students in the lesson, providing feedback to the instructor and boosting students’ confidence in asking questions and participating in class activities.

This instant feedback on the students’ responses helps both the instructor and the student gauge the level of understanding of the topic, and determine what areas may need more focus. This allows the instructor to redirect the lesson to address the students’ needs, and gives the students a better picture of what they could study more.

The student response system can also be used for research purposes. For example, student responses to polls can be tracked in order to evaluate performance over a semester or a longer period of time.

Use

If you are interested in using the student response system in your course or event, the FITL Center offers training on accessing the technology, starting out with SRS in the classroom, and tracking student performance. A complete list of workshop topics can be found on our training page.

FITL also offers 1-on-1 consultation to those interested in discussing how implementing student response technology can enhance your course or event. Contact tandonSRS@nyu.edu to schedule an individual session.

The three components necessary to get you started with the Student Response System are

  • Student clickers and/or ResponseWare subscriptions
  • A receiver connected to the instructor’s computer
  • TurningPoint software application

To find out how you and your students can access the necessary hardware, see below. For more information on the TurningPoint software and to download a free copy, please visit the Turning Technologies website.

Preparing students for using SRS

It is important to inform students about the use of SRS in the classroom at the beginning of the semester. To aid you in providing this information, FITL has developed a template with information you may want to include in your syllabus about the technology. Feel free to modify the template to suit your course.

Syllabus Addendum Template (NYU login required)

Access

Clickers

Undergraduate Courses

All incoming Tandon undergraduates receive a clicker device and ResponseWare subscription at the beginning of the semester and register it for use in their courses.

New students who have not picked up their clickers by the first day of class should be instructed to bring their student ID and class schedule to the FITL Center in LC 444 to pick up their clicker and activate their subscription.

Clickers are available for loan to graduate or non-Tandon students who are registered in these courses. These students should be advised by their instructor to inquire at the FITL Center about a clicker loan.

Other Courses and Events

The SRS can also be used in higher-level courses or events. After attending an initial consultation or training with FITL, you can borrow a loaner packet containing one receiver and clickers for your students from Media Support Services for an entire semester or one-off use. Media Support Services is located in JAB 776.

Receivers

The quickest way to access a receiver is to borrow one from Media Support Services for one semester or one-off use. Media Support Services is located in JAB 776.

If you are interested in using a receiver and clickers for longer periods of time, you can consider requesting a receiver from your department. Some departments have chosen to purchase and circulate receivers internally.

If you prefer to use your own receiver, they are also available for purchase from Turning Technologies. Please contact tandonSRS@nyu.edu for information on purchasing a receiver.

Clicker Test Packets

Instructors and event coordinators interested in using the SRS can borrow a Clicker Test Packet to try out the technology ahead of time. To request a Test Packet of one receiver and up to 3 clickers, contact Media Support Services after attending an FITL training or consultation session on teaching with the student response system.

Technical Support

FITL's Student Response Intern supports faculty, staff and students on the use of student response technology. The intern position is additionally involved in research projects, finding innovative ways to use the technology for teaching and learning and keeping the Center up to date on what universities around the country are doing with clickers.

For any technical questions you or your students have about clickers or ResponseWare, using TurningPoint, etc., we are available for 1-on-1 consultations. For more information or to schedule a consultation, please contact tandonSRS@nyu.edu.

For additional assistance outside our normal office hours, contact Turning Technologies Technical Support.

Downloads

Syllabus Addendum Template (NYU login required)


Resources

Quick Tips from Faculty

FITL staff conducted interviews with faculty from the Chemistry, Math, Computer Science and Physics departments about their use of the student response system (SRS).

Here are some suggestions they offered for instructors new to teaching with the SRS:

  • Be creative with your multiple choice answers
  • Design your questions based on what you want the question to achieve
  • Have a backup plan in case the technology doesn’t work as expected
  • Ask questions that touch on common misconceptions. This gets students’ attention and can illustrate to them why they’re getting certain problems wrong
  • Use poll questions to provide a change of pace in long classes
  • For review sessions, make small modifications to prior true/false or multiple choice questions to test and reinforce students’ knowledge
  • Provide multiple correct answers to spark discussion
  • Set aside extra time for preparation, at least one hour. The extra work will pay off
  • It's not something you can do haphazardly. Come to class having everything laid out so that you're delivering something to the students that is well thought out and organized
  • Start by asking simple questions, then ramp up to the more difficult topics
  • Build up a pool of poll questions that you can draw from, and divide them by lecture, by topic, etc.
  • As you refine your question creation process, it becomes less labor intensive
  • Save all of your student response data. If a student comes in for office hours, look at how they responded on a particular section. Try and correlate their results on a particular exam with their results on a particular question during class to try and see where they lost track of the material, or if they never had the hang of it to begin with

Student Experience

In Spring 2011, the FITL Center conducted a survey of students about their clicker use that semester.

The results of the survey showed that using SRS significantly improves the classroom learning experience for students, and that a majority of students would like to continue using the technology in the future.

Using SRS in class helps students understand the subject matter better, according to about two-thirds of the students polled. Responses also indicated that students were more likely to

  • Feel confident asking questions when others gave the same wrong answer
  • Study topics they hadn’t done well on during a polling session
  • Complete assignments on time in preparation for poll sessions

Additional Resources

More Professors Give Out Hand-Held Devices to Monitor Students and Engage Them
Jacques Steinberg, New York Times. November 15, 2010

In Search of Answers, Teachers Turn to Clickers 
Dan Bobkoff, NPR’s All Things Considered. March 2, 2009

7 things you should know about...Clickers
EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative, 2005

Clickers in the Classroom: An Active Learning Approach
Margie Martyn, Mathematics and Computer Science Department, Baldwin-Wallace College, 2007

A Clicker Approach to Teaching Calculus
Martina Bode, Denise Drane, Yifat Ben-David Kolikant, Mary Schuller, 2009

Clicker Sets as Learning Objects
Gerald Bergtrom, Biological Sciences Department and Learning Technology Center, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, 2006

Clickers in the Large Classroom: Current Research and Best-Practice Tips
Jane E. Caldwell, Department of Biology, West Virginia University, 2007