What are iClickers?
The iClicker is one brand in a classification of tools referred to as “classroom response systems” or “student response systems.” Essentially, the iClicker is an electronic polling technology that allows students to give instant feedback or answers to questions during class, including anonymously.
Students respond to polls with either analog handheld remote devices or an app (on their mobile devices or laptop). Faculty can opt to display students’ collective responses to the class.
What are the differences between iClicker Classic and iClicker Cloud?
iClicker has two versions from which faculty can choose to run polls:
- iClicker Classic – Stores all data locally; faculty can run iClicker Classic off a thumb drive (in the podium computer) or laptop. Students participating with iClicker+ Remotes can only answer multiple choice questions and true/false, although iClicker Classic allows for a few other question types, if students are participating with an iClicker2 Remote or the Reef App.
- iClicker Cloud – Stores all data in the cloud; faculty can run iClicker Cloud from any computer including from the classroom podium computers. iClicker Cloud has a broad range of question types including multiple choice, short answer, true/false, multiple-answer, numeric answer, target/hot spot, and exit polls (again, students participating with iClicker+ remotes can only answer multiple choice). iClicker Cloud distinguishes the functions of polling and quizzing and supports asynchronous sessions via “Assignments.”
No matter which instructor software is used, students can respond using iClicker+ or iClicker2 Remotes via radio waves sent to a receiving base station that is connected to the instruction computer OR students can use iClicker Reef on their laptops, tablets, or smartphones, submitting responses via wifi/cellular data. If you are using iClicker Cloud in a fully remote or online course, students will not have the option of using a handheld clicker; they must use iClicker Reef on a laptop, tablet, or smartphone.
How do I install and run iClicker Cloud?
Instructions for Creating an iClicker Cloud Account & Installing iClicker Cloud Software
- Create an iClicker Cloud instructor account, if you do not already have one (this is also called an iClicker Reef account).
- If you will be running iClicker on your own laptop, download the appropriate iClicker Cloud application (software) you will be bringing to your classroom or using in your remote/online course. Otherwise, starting in Fall 2020, all general purpose classrooms will have the iClicker Cloud software installed. Unlike iClicker Classic, you do not need to store your data on a thumbdrive; all data is stored in the cloud.
- If running iClicker Cloud on your laptop, log in to the installed iClicker Cloud application.
Instructions for Setting Up an iClicker Cloud Course
Create a course in iClicker Cloud. If you will only be running iClicker on your laptop, you can create the course in the downloaded application or in a browser on the Instructor Site. If you’ll be using the classroom podium computers, create your class in a browser. The steps shown below demonstrate creating a course in the browser on the Instructor Site.
- Choose whether you’ll just take attendance or also run polls/quizzes.
- Affiliate with the University of Vermont.
- Recommended naming convention: Semester – Course Title.
- Click on the course name.
- Click on “Settings…”
- If you are running a remote/online course, click on the “Devices” tab.
- Choose Mobile Devices Only (which allows students to participate with laptops, tablets, and smartphones, but not handheld clickers).
- Click on the “Polling” tab to determine what points students will earn for participation and/or performance as well as the values for those activities.Choose whether or not to send a picture of your screen to student devices when polling starts. This is recommended so that students can easily see the question. Additionally, set values for participation and performance points.
Instructions for Integrating an iClicker Cloud Course with Blackboard
- Click on the “Integrations” tab (from the Instructor site rather than the app you downloaded to your computer).
- First, make sure that you are logged into Blackboard in your computer’s default web browser.
- Next, click Connect to Blackboard
- Click “Go to Blackboard.”
- From the list of courses, choose the Blackboard course that corresponds to the iClicker Cloud course you are integrating.
- Select “Sync Roster Now.”
- You should see confirmation that the Sync was successful. This will download your Blackboard roster to iClicker Cloud. You will need to do this regularly during add/drop to ensure that your Blackboard and iClicker rosters match.
- Finally, make determinations about whether you wish to aggregate all iClicker data to a single column in Blackboard or whether you wish to create a new column in Blackboard for each iClicker session. Additionally, choose whether students will receive a score of zero if they do not participate in a session. This is required if you plan to drop the lowest scores and count non-participated sessions as possible drops.
Helping Your Students Get Started with iClicker Reef
- If you are using iClicker Cloud only for attendance, students do not have to pay a fee for the app.
- This Getting Started with iClicker Reef checklist has information for students. In Step 3, your students will need to manually add your course. It is helpful if you provide them with the specific name of your course so that they can easily find it.
- Students’ iClicker Reef accounts comes with a free 14-day trial, after which they must pay for their account.
Instructions for Running iClicker Cloud in Class
- Launch the iClicker Cloud application on the classroom computer or your laptop.
- Login to iClicker Cloud using your previously created instructor account.
- If teaching a fully in-person class, choose whether or not to enable location for attendance. If you do enable location, you will have to choose your class building on a map and specify the number of feet students must be in proximity in order to be present. Enabling location for attendance should NOT be set for courses with students participating remotely. Choose Settings from the drop-down menu:
Select the Attendance tab and choose whether or not to require location and click Save:
- Find the name of your course and choose Start Class.
- Choose the appropriate menu item from the toolbar:A = Toggle to minimize toolbar
B = Open polling
C = Open quizzing
D = View attendees
E = End class session
- From within the Polling modality, you can:
- Ask a variety of polling question types.
- Ask and grade target questions.
- You can also Grade and View Polling results on iClicker Cloud.
- The Polling toolbar floats above any open programs and allows you to control what students see:
A = Close the polling function and view the iClicker Cloud application toolbar (see #8 below)
B = Open (and close) polling
C = Choose question type
D = Display poll results as a graph
E = Additional polling settings
- From within the Quizzing modality, you can define the number of questions and points per question.
- You can also Grade and View Quizzing results on iClicker Cloud.
- If you are using iClicker Cloud to take attendance, there are a few resources and options to explore:
- iClicker has created detailed syllabus language and slides you can use/adapt.
- If you are ONLY using iClicker for attendance, students do not have to pay for the Reef app.
- You can choose to turn on geolocation, which would require students to be physically in your classroom in order to be counted as present (again, this is NOT recommended for classes with remote students.
- You can turn on iClicker Focus, which provides a report to students and instructors at the end of each class indicating number of instances and time spent away from the iClicker Reef app.
- You can also View and Manage Attendance data (you do not need to manually export, because you have set up a direct link to your Bb Grade Center).
- For any class session, you also have the option of running an exit poll with iClicker Cloud, which can serve as a type of formative assessment, providing you and students with information about their level of understanding. Consider starting with points of confusion at the next class.
- If you choose, students may have the option of using handheld iClickers or the Reef app to participate in polls run through iClicker Cloud, recognizing that students using handheld clickers will not be able to participate in questions based on certain question types. You also have the option of restricting participation only to students using handheld iClickers.
Instructions for Viewing Previous iClicker Cloud Sessions and Syncing Grades to Blackboard
- When you are done running a poll, sign back in to your iClicker Cloud account on the Instructor site.
- Click on the name of your course.
- Click on Gradebook (on the left menu) then click on the Sync Grades.
- You should now see one or more columns (depending on how you set up syncing) in your Blackboard course with each student’s iClicker Reef results.
- iClicker Cloud can also generate study tools based on your in-class polls.
- There are additional actions you can take on the iClicker Cloud Instructor Website.
Instructions for Using Teams with iClicker Cloud/Reef for Remote Classes
There are a variety of ways to share your screen during a Teams meeting. When using iClicker Cloud, you likely will want to share your Desktop so that you can toggle between your slides and your iClicker toolbar (which will allow you to share polling results with your students).
As noted, above, in the Instructions for Setting Up an iClicker Cloud Course, you can choose whether to send results to students when polling ends, or not. Only some polling question types will display all results to students. For instance, students can see aggregate results for multiple choice polls but cannot see all the individual responses for short answer questions (they can only see their own response). Given the inconsistency of sharing results based on question type and the pedagogical reasons for not always revealing all responses to students right away, we recommend that you “do not send results” to student devices when polling ends.
These steps will most seamlessly allow you to display questions and polls to students.
- Before your Teams class meeting, open the file with your questions (typically a Powerpoint, but could also be a website, a word document, a PDF, etc.). Additionally, close any unnecessary programs or programs that could pop-up notifications you wouldn’t want your students to see.
- Before your Teams class meeting, open the iClicker Cloud desktop application (that you’ve previously installed) and login to the program. Then click “Start Class” for the appropriate class, so students can join the iClicker session when they join the Teams class. More information can be found, above, in the Instructions for Running iClicker Cloud in Class.
- Start your class meeting in Teams.
- When you are ready to start sharing questions and polls, be sure you have selected the option to share your Desktop. Students will see anything displayed on the screen that you are now sharing.
- Minimize any unneeded windows (this is often, minimally, the main Teams program window).
- Display your document containing questions. If you choose to display in full screen, you will no longer be able to see the Teams meeting window, unless you have a second screen or second device. You can also layer windows, with the Teams meeting window behind the document with your questions so that you can still keep an eye on the meeting chat. Or, you can view the Teams meeting on a second screen or device.
- The iClicker Cloud toolbar should float on top of any programs.
- When you are ready to begin polling, choose the question type and start polling.You and your students will see something similar to this (a Powerpoint slideshow in fullscreen presentation mode with the iClicker Cloud toolbar floating on top):
Or something like this (a Powerpoint slideshow presented to a resized Window layered on top of the Teams meeting window, with the iClicker Cloud toolbar floating on top):
- From this screen, you will not be able to see the students’ responses; you can only track the number of responses recorded. If you wish to see more details of the student’s responses, log in to the iClicker Cloud app on a mobile device simultaneously.
- Stop polling when you have a sufficient number of responses of time you’ve provided is complete.
- Choose whether or not to display the results to students from the iClicker Cloud toolbar.
- Repeat displaying questions and starting/stopping polling as many times as desired.
- If you are only using iClicker polling for a portion of class, you may choose to stop sharing your Desktop in the Teams meeting and choose a different sharing option so you can view the Teams meeting chat and participant list more easily.
How do I install and run iClicker Classic?