Audience response systems can facilitate communal course feedback

Pete Bridge, Mary-Anne Carmichael


Background: At Queensland University of Technology (QUT), the Bachelor of Radiation Therapy course evaluation has previously suffered from low online survey participation rates. A communal instantaneous feedback event using an audience response system (ARS) was evaluated as a potential solution to this problem. The aims of the project were to determine the extent to which this feedback event could be facilitated by ARS technology and to evaluate the impact the technology made on student satisfaction and engagement.

Methods: Students were invited to a timetabled session to provide feedback on individual study units and the course overall. They provided quantitative Likert-style responses to prompts for each unit and the course using an ARS as well as anonymous typed qualitative comments. Data collection was performed live so students were able to view collective class responses. This prompted further discussion and enabled a prospective action plan to be developed. To inform future ARS use, students were asked for their opinions on the feedback method.

Results: Despite technological difficulties, student evaluation indicated that all responders enjoyed the session and the opportunity to view the combined responses. All students felt that useful feedback was generated and that this method should be used in the future. The student attendance and response rates were high, and it was clear that the session had led to the development of some insightful qualitative feedback comments.

Conclusions: An ARS contributed well to the collection of course feedback in a communal and interactive environment. Students found it enjoyable to use, and it helped to stimulate useful qualitative comments. 


audience response systems; course feedback; clinical sciences; education

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