Use of audience response systems for summative assessment in large classes

Terence M Hancock


The audience response system - technology that allows immediate compilation and display of a group's multiple choice input - is being shown effective in the classroom both in engaging students and providing real time, formative assessment of comprehension. This paper looks at its further potential as an alternative for summative assessment, replacing conventional examinations and testing as a basis for student grades. After brief discussion as to practical benefits of doing so and a review of ARS - hardware, software, and studies of its impact on learning - we develop and report outcomes of two distinct trials utilising ARS for both formative and summative assessment. Results indicate synergies in combining the two forms of assessment, though student attitudes are found to be particularly sensitive to the instructor's approach to design.

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