19 Aug 2007 ............... Length about 700 words (6,000 bytes).
(Document started on 11 Aug 2007.)
This is a WWW document maintained by
Steve Draper, installed at http://www.psy.gla.ac.uk/~steve/ilig/ped.html.
You may copy it.
How to refer to it.
Web site logical path:
Summary of pedagogic purposes for EVS
Department of Psychology,
University of Glasgow.
This page is an attempt to keep an up to date, complete list in one place
of the different pedagogical purposes that EVS can be used for. For
explanations of what is meant in more detail, you'll either have to look at a
2001 paper presenting some of them here
or a page on (some) alternative question types for
different purposes, and how to create them.
High level purposes or functions
- Gaining feedback for the teacher which they then use to dynamically
adapt their teaching.
- Diagnostic questions to drill down to find problems to address
- Engaging students with subject matter. Provided the questions are
challenging and particularly if each student also has to discuss it, then
this is active use of, and grappling to understand, concepts.
- Exam practice, combined with feedback to students combined with interactive
- Giving the learner feedback on what they do and don't know well enough:
This is one of the few things clearly shown to improve learning. It probably
works by focussing self-initiated work by learners.
- Remediation sessions after a written test
- Attendance checking
- Summative assessment
- Test knowledge levels at course start
- Getting a new group acquainted with each other
- Diagnostic SAQs ("self-assessment questions"), to allow each student to
measure the state of their understanding at the moment.
- Questions to drill down to find and address problems. Essentially a tree
of questions, that change what the teacher does in the session: "contingent
- To initiate a discussion. I.e. ask a brain teaser, do not tell the
audience what the right answer is.
As in Mazur's method of "peer instruction" or more generally what Hake calls
"Interactive engagement". This is one of the few uses of educational
technology that has been shown to produce large positive effects on learning
measured in objective tests.
- A problem or proof is worked through by the presenter, subdivided into a
number of stages. At the end of each stage, the audience answers a question
e.g. on what the result of that step should be. It's a way of keeping the
audience and presenter in step through a long multi-stage argument.
- Course feedback: asking students about aspects of the course:
Formative feedback to the teacher.
- Practice exam, where the answers are keyed in rather than written by
students, and the results can be compiled and commented on, and discussed by
students with staff all in one session.
- Peer assessment could be done on the spot, saving the teacher
administrative time and giving the learner much more rapid, though public,
- Community mutual awareness building.
At the start of any group e.g. a research symposium or the first meeting of a
new class, the equipment gives a convenient way to create some mutual
awareness of the group as a whole by displaying personal questions and having
the distribution of responses displayed.
- Collecting data in experiments using human responses:
- Politics (demonstrate / trial voting systems)
- Psychology (any questionnaire can be administered then results shared)
- Physiology (Take one's pulse: see class' average; auditory illusions)
- Vision science (display visual illusions; how many "see" it?)
- Have student (groups) design EVS questions and present them as part of
talks given to the rest of their class. The discussion that ensues during the
design of the questions, alternative responses, and justifications to be used
when explaining the answers, can be highly generative of learning.
Social and individual benefits
Besides the lists above, however, another way of looking at it that may be
fruitful, is to consider that EVS generally simultaneously serves two
different kinds of function: promoting individual learning, and promoting an
integrated, functioning learning community. Most applications do both to some
extent. For instance, a set of quiz questions might seem to be designed to
allow an individual to check their own learning privately and anonymously: but
it actually simultaneously makes each learner aware of how they compare to the
class as a whole overall and on each question. This is often important in
making learners feel comfortable asking for explanations (many others clearly
need it too) from either teachers or peers; and it makes the teacher feel in
touch with the current level of understanding in the class.
But perhaps it isn't exactly "social". There are three parties here: the
learner as individual, the teacher, and the group as a whole. EVS keeps them
mutually aware of each other's position.
Web site logical path:
[Top of this page]