CLICKER STUDIES: REVIEW OF THE USE OF EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGY PRINCIPLES, PROCEDURES, AND ITEMS

Open Access
Author:
Hepfer, Michelle Lynn
Graduate Program:
Educational Psychology
Degree:
Master of Science
Document Type:
Master Thesis
Date of Defense:
February 05, 2018
Committee Members:
  • Jonna Marie Kulikowich, Thesis Advisor
  • Bonnie J Meyer, Committee Member
Keywords:
  • Clickers
  • Personal Response Systems
Abstract:
Clickers have been used in classrooms as a tool to improve learning and affect for students. However, administrative procedures such as timed responses, peer discussion, and type of feedback carried out during studies on the effectiveness of clickers differ greatly because instructors differ in administrative preferences surrounding the use of clickers in their classrooms. In addition, many publications fail to provide descriptions or examples of the clicker items used in their studies. The differences in procedures and lack of information contribute to inconsistent and inconclusive results on the effectiveness of clickers for increasing student learning. This review assesses studies for their use of principles from the field of educational psychology to support student learning in conjunction with clickers; determines inconsistencies in the literature of the administrative procedures and types of feedback; and, analyzes descriptions and examples of clicker items asked. It was found that the most common principle from educational psychology applied in the studies was the use of multiple external representations (MERs) with the clicker questions. It was also found that the majority (n=104) of studies neither use nor address the use of peer discussion, re-voting, timed responses, or feedback when using clickers. Only 47% of the studies provided example items; of those, most possessed major design flaws based on empirically validated guidelines. Future recommendations include determining which administrative procedures consistently produce favorable results and a call for research on the effectiveness of using MERs with clicker questions.