Group Response Techniques Essay

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Active student responding is a critical component of effective instruction in class room . One low tech strategy developed to facilitate active student responding during group instruction involves the use of response cards . Typically this approach involves the teacher asking questions during instruction and having each student write down his / her answers on the response cards and then display those responses for the teacher feedback and corrective action. This paper is to evaluate that response cards is a more effective group response

technique than the hand raising technique and other techniques. During hand raising , a student who raised his/her hand is called upon to answer the question posed by the teacher . During response card techniques , each student is asked to display his/her answer on the response card provided to him/her . The frequency of active student response was higher with the response cards than the hand raising technique Introduction Group response techniques are those techniques through which a group of students or Participants can answer to a question rather than individually in a classroom activity or session.

Students are considered to be actively engaged in a class room session when they respond in a group , and its a sign that they are likely to learn the material being taught to them . The teacher can observe the students response to get a immediate feedback about whether the majority of students in the class are able to truly understand the academic content . There are three group response techniques 1. Response Cards 2. Choral Response

3. Hand raising Response cards: In this technique students respond as a group by displaying their response cards which displays their answers to the question posed by the teacher. Choral response: In this technique the students in a class or group respond orally in unison to the question posed by the teacher . Hand raising: In this technique, the teacher asks the question before calling upon an individual student who raised his/her hand. Why only response cards is preferred ? The use of response cards is one strategy that has shown promising initial results for increasing the frequency of active student response and sequent academic achievements during large group instructions .

Response cards are reusable cards held up simultaneously by each student to indicate his or her answer. In this paper we will study about response cards in comparison with hand raisings , We will be comparing the factors like: (a) frequency of active student response (b) accuracy of student responses (c) teacher presentation rate Response cards As told earlier, Response cards is one type of group response techniques in which students respond as a group by displaying response cards which displays their answers to the question posed by the teacher. There are two response card formats.

1. cards with pre printed response choices 2. cards on which students write their response The teacher should introduce response cards by explaining and demonstrating their use and importance , letting the students to practice the response procedure so that they get familiar and proficient in using them . The teacher should maintain a quick , lively pace through the lesson , providing clues to the students about when to use response cards appropriately. Some students may inevitably display a wrong answer, then the teacher/instructor should focus on and provide feedback for the majority response

Performance feedback: In giving feedback, the teacher should give information about whether the majority class response is correct , and immediately provide the correct response and supporting explanation if a significant number of students answered incorrectly . Those items missed by many students should be presented again later in the lesson to ensure that students have learned the material after corrective feedback. The instructor should also praise students periodically for appropriate and prompt use of the group response format.

Additionally, The teacher should acknowledge and validate answers that differ from the instructors but could still be considered correct. Survey A study has been conducted in fifth grade classroom in an elementary school . There were 13 boys and 11 girls in the class, five students were selected for observation after consultation with their regular teacher . The target 5 students have been divide into two groups of 3 and 2 students each (sometimes this type of division can be considered as triangulation) ,and the student in each group were observed on the alternating trails .

The class room is equipped with an overhead projector and screen . The questions to be asked are screened on the screen using projector . Using projector and screen had made the process of questioning the students more easier than the conventional way of questioning. The study involves two sessions: 1. HAND RAISING TECHNIQUES SESSION During Hand raising sessions the teacher poses a set of questions to the students, one of the students who raise their hand is called upon to give the response. In this technique only one student is involved in giving the response while the other students sit idle in the class .

The teacher provides a praise for each correct response (e. g. , Excellent [students name] ,The sun is a star. ) and a corrective feedback for incorrect response(e. g. , No, the answer is the sun, The sun is a star. ) The feedback procedure controls the number of times the students write/hear the correct answer to each instruction. 2. RESPONSE CARD SESSION Presentation and question asking procedures during the response card sessions were identical to those during the Hand raising sessions.

For each student a laminated card is provided on which he/she has to write his/her response to the teachers question. After visually scanning all of the response cards held up by the students, the teacher provides a praise or a corrective feedback. If every ones response in the class is correct the teacher addresses the feedback to whole class(e. g. , Good class, water vapor in the atmosphere is a gas. ) and if some of the student responses are wrong the teacher addresses a feedback to the class (e. g. , I see that many of you have gas as the answer .

That is correct. Water vapor in atmosphere is gas. ) and if no one gives correct response the teacher addresses a corrective feedback to the class ( e. g. , I dont see the correct answer . The correct answer is gas . Water vapor in atmosphere is a gas. ). As in Hand raising phases the feedback procedure controls the number of times the students write/hear the correct answer to each instruction in response card phase also . Results of the study During HR (hand raising) ,the average number of times the target student raised his/her hand was 9. 9 .

The number of responses by the target student during HR averaged 1. 5 per session (the period of questioning) , when RC (response cards) were used , each target student responded to the teachers question an average of 21. 8 times per session, thats a 14 fold increase . Overall, the students as a group orally responded 53 times to 1,103 questions posed in Hand raising phase and 68 times to 1,103 questions posed in the response card phase. So the frequency of the active students response was determined to be higher with response cards than with Hand raising technique.

The accuracy of student responses during HR and RC are 92% and 93% respectively. Problems associated with response card techniques Q. When we use response cards in a class , we may notice that some students copy the responses from their neighbors cards instead of thinking of their own answers. What should we do then? Response cards provide children with a means of getting actively involved in the lesson. Therefore, children should not be discouraged from looking at each others cards, even if they appear to be copying the response of other students .

Rather, the teacher should interpret this student behavior as a possible sign that the child may be confused about the task or may not yet have a firm grasp on the material being presented. In their instance, the instructor can make arrangements to provide the child with additional instruction and guidance as needed . Another problem associated with response cards is , the student may not be very sure of the spellings in his/ her response , so sometimes they try to hide their response instead of showing them up . So students shouldnt be charged against such kind of mistakes.

It should be made clear well before the question is posed that they wouldnt be held against for such kind of mistakes . Instead ,their answers should be validated in spite of any spelling or grammatical mistakes . And in order to reduce the spelling difficulties , the instructor could : (1) Have students pre practice the spelling of new vocabulary words prior to the lesson . (2) Post unfamiliar spelling terms on the board/ screen for students to refer to as they write their responses. (3) Encourage students to try their best in spelling their responses but reassure them that misspellings will not be counting against them.

Discussions 1) Response cards allow the teacher to teach facts and definitions more effectively than any other group response techniques. 2) The rate of students academic content learning ability is more in RC than other techniques . 3) This technique is more reliable in increasing the frequency of active student response. 4) Response cards are less disruptive and stays more on task unlike hand raising technique. 5) The disadvantage of not being called upon in hand raising techniques is not present in response cards.

So every student gets involved in the class. 6) There is more fun involved in this technique than the other techniques , so students will actively participate in the class instead of sitting idle . Response card techniques is replicable by any teacher as it involves no difficulty in implementing it in the class rooms. In fact they provide better results than other group response techniques . But the teachers shouldnt handle the students in a rigor manner . Strictness , Harshness, Severity should be ruled out while dealing with students. Students preferences

During the end of the study, personal interviews are conducted for students and many students said they preferred response card over hand raising as the response card helped them in learning more academic content than Hand raising did. Conclusion The study has proved that the use of response cards is most effective than other group response techniques because it has got more advantages than the other techniques illustrated in the paper and also it helps the students in increasing the learning ability , and makes more students to involve in the class room sessions more actively.


Heward. W. L (1996). Three low tech strategies for increasing the frequency of active student response during group instruction In R. Gardner ,D. M. Sainato,J. OCooper,T. E. Heron,W. L. Heward,J. W. Eshelman,&T. A. Grossi (Eds) Behavior analysis in education :focus on measurably superior instruction(pp. 283-320). Pacific Grove ,CA:Brooks/Cole Journal of applied behavior analysis, 1994, spring ,R. Gardner, W. L. Heward, T. A. Grossi Teaching of psychology, Taylor and Francis group, Routledge publishers Meta analysis and research on response cards: Effects on test achievements, Randolph journal of positive behavior interventions. 2007,9:113-238

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