Turning Technology Student Response System

What Is It?

Turning Technology’s student response systems are used by faculty members during class to poll students or give a short quiz. Typically, they are used in larger, lecture-style classes and can involve hardware-based systems (where students are given a hand-held device similar to a remote control) or software-based systems that use existing hardware such as laptop or hand-held computers. They are also sometimes referred to as “personal”, “audience” or “classroom” response systems.

Who Uses It?

Student Response Systems can also be used in smaller class sizes, although many of the types of activities that can be done with the systems can be readily accomplished by more traditional methods, such as class discussions or informal “show of hands” or paper-based polling and quizzing. However, an instructor might use such a system to have students answer questions in small group collaboration.

These systems are generally not suitable for more advanced collaborative work, such as students commenting on exchanged papers, since they are only capable of numeric responses and short text messages. (The use of in-class laptops might be a better option for these types of activities.)

PRS remote PRS clicker PRS in Classroom Classroom PRS use

How Does It Work?

At the beginning of class, an instructor hands out transmitter units or hand-held computers to the students. Alternately, students may own their own transmitters. With prompting from the instructor, students input answers or comments into the devices during class. Hardware-based units usually allow for multiple-choice- and yes/no type of questions; some allow students to weight answers based on their confidence.

Turning Technology student response systems are easily integrated into Powerpoint and other Microsoft office applications so that response results may be easily displayed in the classroom if projection is provided.

Instructional Technology Uses

Personal response systems can be used for very easily for informal, formative assessment in the classroom. They also provide a way to promote student-teacher and student-student interaction, even with large classes.
  • Poll students for an answer to a question and display the answer distribution as a graph.
  • Encourage student engagement with multiple-choice response questions through a lecture.

The content on this page was derived from webpages maintained by the Duke University Center for Instructional Technology