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Education Technology

Classroom Technology

Steve Wolfman

UW CSE Education &

Educational Technology

Research Group


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Educational Technology

…in the winter of 1813 & '14 … I attended a mathematical school kept in Boston…On entering [the] room, we were struck at the appearance of an ample Black Board suspended on the wall, with lumps of chalk on a ledge below, and cloths hanging at either side. I had never heard of such a thing before. [Samuel J. May, 1855]



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Challenges for Classroom Technologies

  • “Raise the floor” [Nass]

  • Don’t “lower the ceiling” [Nass]

  • Sculpt an effective design space

  • Secure adoption!


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Our projects

  • Classroom Presenter

    • Initial development at MSR

  • Classroom Feedback System

  • Structured Interaction Presentations


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Classroom Presenter

  • Initial problem

    • Develop a distributed presentation space for use in a distance learning class

  • Later

    • Many of the same issues / challenges in large lecture classroom


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Large lecture classes

Challenges

  • Maintaining attention

  • Communication

  • Feedback from students

  • Flexibility in presentation materials

  • Conducting activities in class


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Background studies

  • Studied UW CSE PMP

    • Interviews, Surveys, Observations

  • Greatest pain in distance course

    • Presentation environment

    • “PowerPoint is a pain for the same reason it’s a pain in a non-distance course, the slides impose a rigid structure on the lecture and make it more difficult to adjust to the interactions that occur during it.”

    • “PowerPoint sucks the life out of a class.”


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Important features

  • Wireless

  • Integration of High Quality Ink and Slides

  • Multiple views

  • “Performance UI”


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Spring 2002

Database (Masters)

Summer 2002

Introductory Programming (142)

Fall 2002

Introductory Programming (Ext 142)

Introductory Programming (143)

Algorithms (417)

Software Engineering (403)

Languages (413)

Compilers (Masters)

Classroom Deployments


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Results

  • Observation, instructor comments, logging

  • Positive reception from instructors

    • Sustained use of writing through full term

    • Wide range of use

      • Highlighting / Attention

      • Derivations / Diagrams

      • Recording comments

  • Studentresponse:


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Results

  • System easy to use

  • Flexible navigation important

    • Superior to shuffling transparencies

  • Auxiliary inking surfaces useful

    • Whiteboard, border, mylar

  • Pen based UI for navigation and controls is critical

    • Generally works well (large buttons, workflow)

    • Remaining issues


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Questions

  • What is the educational impact of Presenter?

    • Across different disciplines, teaching styles

    • Different components of the system

  • UI Issues for delivering presentations

  • Future development plans

    • Integration with viewer devices

    • Expand use of ink

    • Manipulatives to go beyond virtual whiteboard


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Classroom Feedback System

  • Student feedback does not scale

  • Encourage participation

  • Ease of expression

  • If the method does scale, how does the instructor make sense of it


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Design choices

  • Low attention requirements

  • Embed in context of the slide

    • Slides are the mediating artifact

  • Fixed feedback

    • Avoid having to compose questions

    • Instructor control of feedback

      • Example, More Information, Got It

      • Slow Down,Question,Explain,Cool Topic


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Experiment

  • Roughly 12 students given laptops to use in class

  • 3 week deployment in CSE 142

    • 4 weeks no intervention

    • 2 weeks Tablet PC

    • 3 weeks Tablet PC + feedback system

  • Extensive observations, logging, surveys, interviews


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Results

  • Mixed results

    • Classroom culture not what we had expected

    • Instructor goals different than expected

  • Interactions did increase

    • Pre CFS: 2.4 (spoken) episodes per class

    • With CFS:

      • 2.6 (spoken) episodes per class

      • 14.8 (feedback) episodes per class

  • Discovered new interaction patterns


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Structured Interaction Presentations

  • Assume students have wireless devices

  • Build interactive activities into lecture

  • Computer support to overcome logistical barriers


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Why Computer Support?

  • Facilitate execution

  • Unify design

  • Enforce polices


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Why Structure?

  • Attain broader participation and more input

  • Achieve specific goals

  • Spread cognitive effort over planning time

  • Mediate classroom activity

  • Share activities across instructors and across terms


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Example: America Before Columbus [Cross and Angelo]

  • How many people lived in North America in 1491?

  • How many years had they been there by 1491?

  • What significant achievements had they made in that time?


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Your Impressions of America Before Columbus

  • About how many people lived in North America in 1491?

  • About how many years had they been on this continent by 1491?

  • What significant achievements had they made in that time?


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Your Impressions of America Before Columbus

  • About how many people lived in North America in 1491?

  • About how many years had they been on this continent by 1491?

  • What significant achievements had they made in that time?

% completed

% completed

% completed


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How many people?

0 10 100 1000 10,000 100,000 1,000,000 10,000,000

From

400

To

2,500,000


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“Solving” Natural Language

Problem: handling free text responses in class is impractical

Solution: “distributed student computation”

  • allows rapid, in-class turnaround

  • can be pedagogically sound


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Significant Achievements

Get together with your neighbor and:

  • rate the significance of each achievement

  • note if an achievement repeats an earlier one


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Significant Achievements

Get together with your neighbor and:

  • rate the significance of each achievement

  • note if an achievement repeats an earlier one



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Credits

  • University of Washington

    • Ruth Anderson, Steve Wolfman, Tammy Vandegrift, Fred Videon, Ken Yasuhara

  • Microsoft Research, Learning Sciences and Technology Group

    • Jay Beavers, Jack Davis, Randy Hinrichs, Alvin Hui, Chris Moffat, Steve Wolfman


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UW CSE Education & Educational Technology Projects

  • Professional Masters’ Program

  • Tutored Video Instruction Program

  • CSE 142/143

  • Classroom Assessment Tools


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