iClicker getting positive response at RIC

RIC faculty members experiment with the iClicker in the classroom.

RIC faculty members experiment with the iClicker in the classroom.
These days technology is everywhere. Phones play music and take pictures, computers are shrinking, television screens are larger and flatter, and more people get directions from their GPS systems. At RIC, a prime example of new technology is the iClicker, becoming more widely used on campus.

The iClicker is a portable, handheld audience response system that students take to class. The professor is able to pose a question to the class, and the student responds to the multiple choice, true/false, or yes/no questions by pressing a button – similar to the devices used on television shows like “Who Wants to be a Millionaire.”

“It allows students to find out areas where they need to study, and tells faculty if their students are grasping the topic or not. Students and faculty that have been using the clickers can see the value in using them in class,” said Scott Badger, program consultant with RIC’s User Support Services.

Anthony Carlino, a supervisor in the audiovisual
department, demonstrates the iClicker.
RIC tested and researched several different versions of clickers before deciding on the iClicker. Only two years since it was introduced, this piece of technology is being used in over 50 colleges and universities across the country.

The device is user-friendly because the professor’s information can be stored on a USB memory stick and plugged into any PC or Mac computer.

“Clickers have many benefits to instructors and students, but they might not be the best fit for every instructor and every course," said Lisa Bain, assistant professor of accounting and computer information systems. “Instructors should spend some time planning exactly how they would use the clickers before using them in their classes.”

Bain added that her students enjoy using the clickers in class, and many agree that clickers increase their interest and help them to better understand the material.

Kaytii Chase, a RIC junior, has used the iClicker in a managerial accounting class last semester. “It helped a lot and further emphasized what we were covering in class,” said Chase.

At RIC, departments such as Nursing, Psychology, History, Management and Education are using the device. It can be purchased at the RIC bookstore for $35.