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ERIC Number: EJ889541
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 8
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 41
ISSN: ISSN-1931-7913
Does Displaying the Class Results Affect Student Discussion during Peer Instruction?
Perez, Kathryn E.; Strauss, Eric A.; Downey, Nicholas; Galbraith, Anne; Jeanne, Robert; Cooper, Scott
CBE - Life Sciences Education, v9 n2 p133-140 Sum 2010
The use of personal response systems, or clickers, is increasingly common in college classrooms. Although clickers can increase student engagement and discussion, their benefits also can be overstated. A common practice is to ask the class a question, display the responses, allow the students to discuss the question, and then collect the responses a second time. In an introductory biology course, we asked whether showing students the class responses to a question biased their second response. Some sections of the course displayed a bar graph of the student responses and others served as a control group in which discussion occurred without seeing the most common answer chosen by the class. If students saw the bar graph, they were 30% more likely to switch from a less common to the most common response. This trend was more pronounced in true/false questions (38%) than multiple-choice questions (28%). These results suggest that observing the most common response can bias a student's second vote on a question and may be misinterpreted as an increase in performance due to student discussion alone. (Contains 6 figures and 2 tables.)
American Society for Cell Biology. 8120 Woodmont Avenue Suite 750, Bethesda, MD 20814-2762. Tel: 301-347-9300; Fax: 301-347-9310; e-mail:; Website:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Wisconsin