The university recently announced that Poll Everywhere will be the new integrated polling tool at USask. As you begin planning for the fall term, you may be considering how you will make use of formative assessment in your courses, including the use of Poll Everywhere.
Formative assessments allow students to obtain feedback on how well they’ve grasped concepts and improve through practice prior to assessments that are higher stakes (exams, major projects, etc.).
For example, if you have been teaching about concept A during a particular class meeting (ten-minute chunks are ideal) you can create a poll in Poll Everywhere and have students answer the question individually or in groups. This practice will help students retain the information and see how well they’ve grasped what was taught. Regular activities like this can also increase student engagement in class.
Formative assessment is also a valuable method of gauging how students in your classes are grasping concepts that you have been teaching. Using the example previously described, you can get a picture of how well students have grasped the concept you taught. If all or most students get the questions correct, you will know they have a firm understanding of that content. If however, many of them answer incorrectly, you will know that you will need to spend more time on the concept, possibly taking a different approach to it with students.
These types of activities take very little time but can help learners retain the information and provide learners and instructors with valuable information that they might not otherwise receive until students take quizzes or exams at a later date.