Create Interactive, Engaging Presentations with Real-Time Feedback Using Mentimeter.

Markus and I have discussed several polling and assessment apps over the years including Socrative (February 2016), Kahoot (June 2016), Google Q&A (April 2018), Polleverywhere (September 2018), Sli.do (May 2019), GoSoapBox (September 2019) and Formative (November 2019).  If you are looking for something different that seamlessly combines interactive, engaging presentations with real-time feedback, consider MentimeterMentimeter allows you to create interactive presentations by embedding polls, word clouds, quizzes, and Q&A slides.  Like other polling applications, students use their smartphones to respond.

What makes Mentimeter different?  Primarily, their free version allows unlimited participants.  This single feature can be extremely useful for those teaching larger classes.  Other benefits of the free version are unlimited presentations and access to the Mentimeter Help Center.  However, the free version does have some limitations.  For instance, it only allows 2 questions per presentation and no more than 5 quizzes.

Mentimeter’s paid upgrades also have some useful enhanced features, including (1) Smartphone presentation control; (2) Easy navigation between presentation slides, student voting, and Q&A monitoring; (3) PowerPoint import feature, which allows you to use existing PowerPoints with Mentimeter assessment features.  In addition to PowerPoint, users can also upload PDF or Keynote files.

For those who prefer to present from a podium, both Windows (PowerPoint 2016 – Office 365 with the Mentimeter plug-in) and Mac’s users can easily toggle or swipe to move between a presentation and the Mentimeter application.

Mentimeter as a single app easily supports interactive lecturing.  Use Mentimeter to start class with an icebreaker activity, encourage discussion between concepts, assess learning, and monitor student questions in real-time.  Mentimeter is also a great reflection tool at the end of an activity, a class or the course.

Most of all, Mentimeter is inclusive, fun and a great way to increase learning.  It is a tool that helps engage everyone in the course while providing the instructor with real-time feedback to quickly assess and correct gaps in knowledge.

To learn more about Mentimeter or set up your free account, go to https://www.mentimeter.com/Mentimeter also has a blog that shares various presentation and teaching tips https://www.mentimeter.com/blog.

©2020 TeachingandLearningToolbox.com

 

2019 Year End Review

Toolbox

As our semester and 2019 come to a close, we feel that it is a great opportunity to reflect upon the fantastic technology tools and topics that we explored throughout the year.  A great resolution for 2020 is to integrate one of these tools into your classroom environment.

Doodlyhttps://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2019/01/

Integrating Data Analytics https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2019/02/

Google Keephttps://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2019/03/

Piazzahttps://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2019/04/

Sli.dohttps://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2019/05/

Identity Guardhttps://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2019/06/

Integrating Data Analytics #2 https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2019/07/

Let’s Get Ready for the New Academic Year – https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2019/08/

Go Soap Boxhttps://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2019/09/

Doceri (Revisited)https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2019/10/

Formative https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2019/11/

We look forward to exploring more teaching and learning technology tools in 2020.

© 2019 Teaching and Learning Toolbox

Formative: A Real-Time, Robust Assessment Tool To Improve Learning!

Markus and I have been a fan of Kahoot (June 2016) and Kahoot Challenges (November 2017) for some time. While Kahoot is a fun way for students to learn and instructors to easily assess learning, there are times when a more robust assessment tool is desired.  Formative is that tool.  Formative is an easy to use, web-based, real-time student response and assessment tool that works well with any device and any type of delivery method (traditional lecture, flipped classroom, hybrid or online).  It allows you to track student learning over a period of time, rather than a single activity.  Formative offers closed and open-ended question options, plus provides immediate feedback, if desired, to support deeper learning.

Formative connects in-class and out-of-class activities together.  It also gives students the opportunity to try, fail and try again.  Markus and I both feel that providing students an opportunity to fail in a safe environment is essential to the learning process.

Formative is a multifaceted tool.  You can use it for assessing student pre-work, supplement interactive lecturing, collect class exit ticket data, enhance reflection activities or simply reinforce class concepts outside of class.  Formative gives students the chance to demonstrate their understanding of concepts through closed-ended questions (Multiple Choice or True False) or open-ended questions with written and/or show your work responses.

As an instructor or program assessment coordinator, you can use the data collected with Formative to improve course delivery immediately or over a period of time.  Formative eliminates the guesswork involved in traditional methods of teaching.  It provides real-time feedback to both the student and the instructor.

The basic version of Formative is free and works quite well for a single instructor. When upgrading to the premium version, you will receive several other features such as cheating detection, enhanced questions with audio, auto-grading, class lock, emoji feedback, randomized questions, and results, answer images, printing for non-tech environments, student to instructor feedback, unlimited progress tracking, unlimited PDF/Word Document uploads, unlimited report exports, default points, customized assignment options, batch scoring and feedback as well as the ability to add answers while grading.

Student access to Formative is also easy.  Students can join your Formative class with a class code or URL.  For schools that use Clever or Google Classroom, Formative integrates easily with these applications.

Formative has a few different ways to monitor student progress, including real-time formative feedback or a student growth tracker. If you want to add learning scaffolding to your course, Formative allows you to provide as many or as few resources as desired.  For instance, when a concept is introduced, you may want to provide students with more supporting resources.  However, as concepts and students evolve, you may decide to use fewer supporting resources and let students work and think more on their own.  Formative is ideal for course or program assessment as it allows you to track by standards or learning outcomes.

To learn more about Formative, go to https://community.goformative.com/videos to view any of the free tutorial videos or you can go to https://goformative.com/ to set up your free account!

©2019 TeachingandLearningToolbox.com

 

 

Doceri – (Revisited)

Doceri

Are you looking for a classroom tool to better engage your students?  Doceri is a terrific engagement tool that Cathy and I have utilized for several years in our on-campus and online class environments.  Doceri is a professional interactive whiteboard tablet app with sophisticated tools for hand-drawn graphics and built-in remote desktop controls. Doceri has the ability to transform your classroom projector into a moving interactive white board.  Doceri allows instructors to record and post lectures for flipped and online class sections, prepare online course orientation videos, and develop problem solution demonstration videos.  The recorded videos can be converted into an MP4 format and be uploaded into a Learning Management System or directly into YouTube.

In addition, Doceri offers The Doceri Certified Educator Professional Development Course. This course is a video training series created with the purpose of:

  • exposing the participant to all the features of the Doceri App and Desktop software.
  • show the participant how to use these features to teach live lessons as well as create Doceri projects for classroom presentation.
  • utilizing Doceri to create video lessons for student review or as part of a flipped classroom.

Also, Doceri will award a Certificate of Completion upon completion of the Doceri Training Course.

Doceri is available for both iPad and Windows.  The Doceri computer license, which includes the training course, is available for a one-time $30 fee.  The Doceri Desktop license key is a perpetual license and never expires, nor are there any subscription fees associated with this software.  Furthermore, Doceri provides a free trial version which allows users to evaluate Doceri for no cost for 30 days.

To view my course demonstration video, please visit the following link:  https://youtu.be/mwjkPLpbGco

For more information about Doceri (purchase and training course) go to the following link:  https://doceri.com/

© 2019 Teaching and Learning Toolbox

 

GoSoapBox to Enhance Classroom Engagement and Learning Assessment

Frequently, Markus and I are asked about the best technology to manage student Q&A’s during class.  In April 2018, we discussed Google Slides Q&A as a technology tool that allows students to ask questions as they occur while letting the instructor decide about the best time to answer those questions. This month we want to introduce another Q&A management technology and learning assessment tool called GoSoapBox.

GoSoapBox is a real-time response system that not only allows instructors to effectively manage student Q&A’s, but also provides students an opportunity to prioritize which questions are the “muddiest points”.  Questions with more student votes, move up the Q&A list.  This makes it easy for the instructor to visually determine which questions to answer in the current class session, the next class session, or through the course Learning Management System (LMS).

Another GoSoapBox feature is the Confusion Barometer.  The Confusion Barometer lets students indicate when they need more clarification about a topic.  The Confusion Barometer provides the instructor with immediate visual feedback about the student learning happening in class. It also allows the instructor to easily identify the number of students who may be confused.

In addition to GoSoapBox’s Q&A feature, additional functions include polling, quizzing, and discussions.  GoSoapBox combines a lot of standalone technology features into one, easy to use technology tool.  Need support?  GoSoapBox offers a free Support Center with FAQs or there is also a Contact Us option.

Like most of the technology tools Markus and I discuss, GoSoapBox has a free version for classes of 30 or less.  If you teach larger class sections, there are upgrade options available: (1) Medium classes (31-75), (2) Large classes (76-150) and (3) Huge classes (151 – 400) classes.  Markus and I tend to have students work a lot in groups; therefore, the free version of GoSoapBox would accommodate up to 30 groups.

GoSoapBox is a cloud-based application and will work on almost all devices that can access a web browser; such as laptops, desktops, Macs, Windows, iPads, iPhones, iPods, Androids, etc.  There is nothing for students to download, install or sign up for.  Instructor’s simply set up an “event” that students can join, then provide students with the event access code.

If you are looking for a way to give all students a voice as well as keep track of the learning pulse in your classroom, GoSoapBox is a great tool to add to your teaching toolbox.  GoSoapBox removes some of the barriers of student engagement and provides instructors with a real-time understanding of student comprehension and learning needs.

Are you ready to try GoSoapBox? Visit https://app.gosoapbox.com/ to get started!

© 2019 Teaching and Learning Toolbox

 

Are You Ready for the New Academic Year?

Toolbox

The new academic year is here and it is time to organize ourselves.  This is a great time to reflect and utilize technology that can help organize yourself and your classroom for the upcoming year.   Where should you start?  Cathy and I think that this is the perfect time to share how we stay organized and to recap some of our favorite and most useful technology tools.

To maintain easy access to our documents from anywhere or any device, Cathy and I utilize Dropbox for document cloud storage.  In addition, Dropbox allows us to easily share documents with anyone.  Other cloud storage services that we recommend are Google Drive (https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2016/01/14/google-drive/), Microsoft One Drive and Apple iCloud.

In addition, a great note taking app is a must have for increasing productivity.  Both Notability (https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2016/07/31/notability/) and Evernote (https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2016/03/30/evernote/) are tools that we utilize on a weekly basis.  Additional note taking tools that we recommend are GoodNotes, Notes Plus, Noteshelf and Apple Notes.

Furthermore, Cathy and I utilize technology to convert our typical classroom into an interactive whiteboard environment.  Doceri (https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2015/09/18/doceri/) allows our hand held devices to project images through the classroom overhead projector and to record our lectures.  Additional whiteboard and/or lecture capture technology that we recommend are Explain Everything, Educreations, ShowMe, Notability, Splashtop, Scoodle Jam, Camtasia, Tegrity ,Snagit https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2017/08/31/snagit/ and Microsoft Whiteboard https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2018/10/.

To increase student engagement in the classroom environment, Cathy and I utilize several polling and gamification technologies.  Poll Everywhere https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2018/09/30/poll-everywhere-update-poll-everywhere-competitions-now-available/, Kahoot https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/?s=kahoot, Piazza https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/?s=piazza, Sli.do https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2019/05/31/sli-do-a-student-engagement-and-data-analysis-tool/, and Socrative https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/?s=socrative are a few of our favorite polling options.  These  student engagement technologies work great for on campus or online learning environments.

Cathy and I integrate many group team activities into our course curriculums.  Some of the technologies that we use to support the group workflow and grading are:  Google Keep https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2019/03/, Slack https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2018/01/31/slack/ and Microsoft Teams https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2018/03/31/microsoft-teams/.  Another technology option to consider for team communication is Group Me.

If you are looking for technologies to introduce data analytics into your curriculum, Tableau and PowerBI https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2019/02/ are very user friendly tools.  In addition, Cathy and I describe how we introduce data analytics into our curriculum at https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2019/07/.

Finally, Cathy and I try to utilize technology to engage our students outside of our classroom lectures.  Some effective technology tools that we use to accomplish student engagement are: Kahoot Challenge https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2017/11/30/kahoot-update-now-available-create-out-of-class-assignments-with-kahoot-challenge/, Flipgrid https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2018/02/28/flipgrid/, Google Slides https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2018/04/30/engaging-students-with-google-slides-qa/, and Recap https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2018/06/30/recap/.

We hope that you take this opportunity to discover at least one technology that can help you become more organized throughout the upcoming year.  We recommend checking with your institution to see if they currently provide any of these technologies at little or no cost to faculty.  Many technologies provide similar benefits; therefore, we identified several tools within each organizational category listed above.  We suggest utilizing tools that compliment your teaching style and that can be acquired for the least amount of resources.  Good luck and have a great academic year.

 

© 2019 Teaching and Learning Toolbox

Integrating Data Analytics In Courses Across Your Curriculum To Raise The Learning Bar!

Today’s accountants find themselves performing more and more tasks that require data analytics skills.  Accounting fields such as audit, tax, financial and managerial accounting all use big data to find patterns that impact decision making and organizational strategy.  Data analytics can help accountants and management better understand their organizations from an external and internal perspective.  Data analytics helps answer what’s happened (descriptive analysis), why it happened (diagnostic) what the future may look like (predictive) and what direction should be taken next (prescriptive).  Accountants are accustomed to looking at problems that need recommendations or solutions.  Data Analytic skills enhance the accountant’s ability to quickly determine trends or irregularities in order to more rapidly identify potential problems and find solutions.

Markus and I feel it is important for students to develop data analytic competencies early in their educational coursework as well as reinforcing or “stepping up” these competencies throughout the curriculum.  So, the question we often hear is, “How do we get started incorporating data analytics into our courses and curriculum”?

Markus and I have created a “step-up” approach to data analytics that can help.  This approach has worked well with our students.  We have found that integrating data analytics into our courses has increased synergy, engagement, collaboration, attendance, as well as student interest in the potential of data analytics.  Additionally, this approach helps us prepare graduates with the required 21st-century skills.

Since Markus and I teach at different institutions and in different parts of the country, we believe our approach to incorporating data analytics is seamless and has a pedagogical purpose that can be replicated into many accounting courses, by any instructor. The first step in this model is to introduce students to Big Data concepts and problems looking for solutions.  Next students interpret already prepared data visualization reports from Power BI and/or Tableau. This gives students the opportunity to see the results of data analytics before they work with any raw data.  After students understand the big picture of data analytics, they begin working with data visualization modeling using Power BI  (https://powerbi.microsoft.com/en-us/downloads/) and/or Tableau (https://www.tableau.com/).  Finally, students are introduced to coding exercises. The Hour of Code (https://hourofcode.com/us, and Code Academy (https://www.codecademy.com/),  both offer free coding tutorials that expose students to the world of coding.  Introducing students to coding is not intended to replace information systems courses or create proficient coders. The goal of this activity is to expose students to the basic concepts of coding in order to increase student interest and a desire to learn more about coding on their own.  Ultimately, we have found that this approach improves critical thinking skills as it pushes students into higher levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy.

Technology and education are continuously evolving.  Integrating data analytics into accounting courses across the curriculum allow faculty and students to stay current with industry and educational trends.  In addition, data analytics integration allows us to address AAA/AICPA Pathways, AACSB Accreditation Standards and AICPA Technology and Tools Competencies.

To learn more about getting started with integrating Data Analytics into your courses, visit our February 2019 blog at https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2019/02/28/integrating-data-analytics-into-your-accounting-courses/.

©2019 Teaching and Learning Toolbox.com

 

Sli.do: A Student Engagement and Data Analysis Tool!

Over the years, Markus and I have been asked which technology tools let students present questions in real time while allowing the instructor to decide what questions to answer and when to answer them.  In April 2018, we presented one possible solution, Google Slides Q&A.  While Google Slides Q&A is a great tool, it is limited to the Google Suite platform.  This may or may not work in some classroom situations or for some instructors.  Therefore, if you are still looking for a technology tool that allows students to submit real-time questions during class while giving you the option for what questions to answer and when Sli.do is a great tool!

Sli.do lets you engage students with traditional features such as live polls and surveys.  However, it also lets you use a crowdsourcing approach to obtain questions and ideas from your students.  In Sli.do, Polls refer to a single question that can be integrated into your presentation for immediate student feedback.  This technique can be helpful when introducing new concepts or connecting concepts together.  Surveys, on the other hand, let you group multiple questions together so that students can answer a series of questions at one time.  The survey approach may be useful to close a class session or as a test preparation tool.

The Questions feature in Sli.do lets students submit questions in real-time while simultaneously allowing other students to view the submitted questions and vote on the questions they find useful. Polls, surveys, and questions can be submitted anonymously, or students can identify themselves by name.  Sli.do gives all students a voice in class. Additionally, the Questions voting feature gives instructors a way to identify and prioritize key areas that need further explanation.

Ideas is a new feature in Sli.do. It allows the instructor to create a topic that students can “brainstorm” about before class, during class or after class.  Like some social media platforms, the Ideas responses can be limited by word count.  Instructors can set response limits to 160, 240 or 300 words.

Sli.do is easy to use and seamlessly integrates with PowerPoint, Keynote, Prezi, or Google Slides by using the free Switcher app. The Switcher app also lets you control the presentation from your smartphone if desired.  If you are using Slack (January 2018) with your classes, Sli.do allows your students to ask questions and engage with the Ideas feature directly through Slack.

Connecting to Sli.do with a laptop or smartphone is as easy as going to  https://www.sli.do/.  Just provide students with your event code and they can join right from the Sli.do home page.  There is nothing to download or install.

A Sli.do event can be active during class or for up to seven days.  Sli.do is perfect for staying connected with your students outside of class as well as engaging online learners.

Do you teach classes larger than 40?  Have you found some polling solutions a bit limited for your needs?  Sli.do can accommodate the larger classes.  The maximum participation cap for Sli.do is 1,000 students, even with the free version!

Wondering which version of Sli.do is for you? Sli.do’s free version allows three polls and one topic per event as well as themed templates for customization, presentation integration with Switcher, training videos, online FAQ’s and 24/5 online support.  However, there is a paid version (single educator) for $75 per year that provides several additional benefits.  For instance, (1) the ability to review and moderate questions before students see them; (2) the ability for the instructor or students to comment on questions or ideas; (3) data analytics (event or account) that can be viewed, analyzed or shared; and (4) the ability to export data to Excel or PDFs.  You may find these additional benefits are worth the investment.  If your school has available resources, there are also department and institutional education pricing plans.

To learn more about Sli.do, visit https://www.sli.do/.  The Education (EDU) Plans (free and paid) can be found at https://www.sli.do/pricing?plan=edu.

Also, the following links are short videos that can help you get started:

Sli.do Questions:  https://www.sli.do/features-questions

Sli.do Polls:  https://www.sli.do/features-polls

Sli.do Ideas:  https://www.sli.do/features-ideas

Sli.do Analytics:  https://www.sli.do/features-analytics

Sli.do Switcher:  https://www.sli.do/switcher

Sli.do Integrations: https://www.sli.do/features-integrations

Sli.do/Slack Integration:  https://www.sli.do/slack-intergration

©2019, Teaching and Learning Toolbox

 

 

 

 

Increase Student Engagement with Piazza

Piazza

Do you strive to be a better teacher?  Are you looking for an easier way to communicate with your students or respond  more quickly to their questions?  Piazza may be the tool that can help you achieve these goals.

Piazza is a social learning platform that is used by over 50,000 professors in 2,000 schools and 90 countries.  Piazza was designed as a tool for students to ask questions and receive answers.  Students have the ability to ask questions privately, to the entire class or to groups.  Many instructors require all questions to go through Piazza instead of individual emails to the instructor.  This format allows all students to benefit from the question and answer.

Piazza’s wiki style format enables collaboration in one place.  Anyone in the class can respond to questions and the instructor has the ability to ensure that the responses are correct.  Piazza allows students to ask questions anonymously, which provides our quiet students the opportunity to submit questions within a safe environment.  The questions and answers are community edited, but there are separate student and instructor edited submissions.  The wiki style format allows the user to see only the high quality question and answer instead of reading through a long thread of submissions.  The questions and responses occur in a real time environment, which allows students to submit questions through Piazza during a class lecture.  The faculty response can even occur during the class session.

Some great features of Piazza’s “free” question and answer platform are:

  • Rich, group edited question and answers
  • All questions in one workflow space
  • Free iOS and Android Piazza mobile apps
  • Integrates with every major Learning Management System
  • Highly customizable real time online polls
  • Detailed participation statistics
  • Instructors can endorse answers to keep the class on track
  • Increase student collaboration

You can view a short video Piazza demonstration at the following link:  https://youtu.be/2jLSiN8E18w

What are you waiting for?  Get started for free at https://piazza.com/

 

© 2019 Teaching and Learning Toolbox

 

Google Keep – Another Great Tool from Google!

Over the years, several of the TeachingAndLearningToolbox blogs have highlighted some great Google tools for use in the classroom or to improve productivity.  Google Keep is another wonderful tool you can add to your Google Suite toolbox.

Google Keep is a free, simple and effective productivity and collaboration tool for both students and instructors. If you want to be more organized, productive and collaborative, Google Keep captures your notes and ideas, provides a collaborative sharing resource and offers a great To Do List feature.

Google Keep is available for your computer on the web or as a download through the Android or iOS mobile store apps. Google Keep also integrates with Google Docs [January 2016, Google Drive Blog, now Google Docs], which is helpful when collaborating.  Additionally, if you download the Google Keep Chrome Extension on your computer, you can save webpages, images, quotes, URLs, text, and your notes with a single click.

Google Keep is visually appealing.  It uses a sticky note, color coding format for listing projects, notes and activities.  The sticky note feature also lets you pin your most important tasks at the top of your screen or device, so they are not overlooked.  Google Keep’s note feature allows you to include text, lists, images, and audio. Voice recordings are automatically transcribed to text, which meets ADA compliance requirements, and text notes can be easily converted to checklists.

Need to pick something up for class?  Add a location-based reminder to your To Do List activity.  This feature sends a message to your mobile device when you are in the location area, saving time and consolidating trips.

Google Keep is similar to Evernote [March 2106, Evernote Blog], although not as robust.   Google Keep allows you to collaborate and share notes with others, which makes it a great tool for students to use for group projects.  It is easy to share, simply add individuals as collaborators.  Google Keep allows group members to see changes happen in real time, which makes it easy for everyone to track completed and outstanding project tasks. Google Keep also allows notes with images to be annotated, which is another great feature.  Evernote is still probably the best option if you want to organize your notes in files and notebooks, attach external files, or utilize work chat, but for Google Suite users, Google Keep may be just the tool you and your students need.

To review some of the other great Google Suite tools we have previously shared, click on the following links:

Google Slides Q&A (April 2018) https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2018/04/30/engaging-students-with-google-slides-qa/

Google Hangouts (May 2016) https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2016/05/31/google-hangouts/

Google Forms (April 2016) https://teachingandlearningtoolbox.wordpress.com/2016/04/29/google-forms/

To learn more about getting started with Google Keep, visit https://www.google.com/keep/.

© 2019 Teaching and Learning Toolbox