Lancaster UniversityGraduate School
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences

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Seminar Series - Interaction and Engagement: What can MOOCs learn from clickers?

Date: 27 February 2013 Time: 12.30 - 2.00 p.m.

Venue: B.89 County South

Dr Catherine Easton

HEA International Scholar 2012-13

Interaction and Engagement: What can MOOCs learn from clickers?

The use of a clicker system, with its focus on active participation, can develop engagement at an individual level and also has the potential, with its ability to develop a sense of community learning,[1]to foster a stronger sense of identity and belonging. The concept of engagement can be contrasted with that of "alienation", a response to which sees students developing ineffective, strategic learning strategies.[2] The provision of effective, timely feedback has been highlighted by Price et al[3] as intrinsically linked to student engagement. Clickers provide a level of on-going feedback which can be harnessed to promote student ownership and reduce passivity. Furthermore, a number of clicker research studies[4] describe increased student engagement with the material, leading ultimately to a higher level of success, based upon both a heightened focus on the material and an interest in the responses of others. Systems such as TurningPoint have now been developed to enable responses to be gained from students' mobile phones, therefore bypassing the need for the purchase and distribution of handsets. The seminar will highlight innovative uses of clickers in the classroom environment and will introduce work focusing on the development of pedagogy surrounding interaction in a MOOC presentation.

This seminar will present preliminary research carried out in association with Vanderbilt University's Centre for Teaching and Learning.

[1] Draper, S., Cargill, J. and Cutts, Q. Electronically enhanced classroom interaction Australian Journal of Educational Technology 2002 18 (1) pp13-23 [Accessed 19/01/12]

[2] Mann, S.J. Alternative Perspectives on the Student Experience: Alienation and Engagement. Studies in Higher Education. 2001 26 (1), pp. 7-19.

[3] Price, M., Handley, K. and Millar, J. Feedback: focusing attention on engagement, Studies in Higher Education, 2011 36 (8) pp879-896

[4] Preszler, R. W., Dawe, A., Shuster, C. B., & Shuster, M. Assessment of the effects of student response systems on student learning and attitudes over a broad range of biology courses. CBE-Life Sciences Education,2007 6(1), pp.29-41.

Siau, K., Sheng, H., & Nah, F. Use of classroom response system to enhance classroom interactivity. IEEE Transactions on Education, 2006 49(3), 398-403.


Who can attend: Anyone


Further information

Organising departments and research centres: Centre for Technology Enhanced Learning, Educational Research


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