LectureTools User Blog

The 3 Most Important Statistics About the Impact of LectureTools

Posted by Christopher Machielse on Mon, Apr 2, 2012 @ 01:04 AM

stanford laptops in lecture
Photo: Stanford EdTech

The University of Michigan Center for Research on Learning and Teaching has already identified strategies to get the best learning outcomes through the use of LectureTools. Using interactive activities to engage students with material and using student responses to start classroom discussions goes a long way towards making students more engaged and attentive during class.

The CRLT also highlights a few statistics about the impact of LectureTools. LectureTools is only a means to the end result of student learning, engagement, and attentiveness. Accordingly, here is our list of the 3 most important numbers to know about LectureTools in the classroom:


1. 13% more students feel their laptop helps improve learning

When comparing classes using LectureTools against the control group, 13% more students reported that their laptop enabled them to learn more. In the LectureTools courses, 53% of students agreed or strongly agreed with the issue, compared to 40% of students from the control classes. This was a statistically significant different to p<.01.

This difference seems intuitive, given Carl Wieman's findings that more interactive teaching styles improve student learning.


2. Student engagement increases by 21%

60% of students in the LectureTools courses agreed or strongly agreed that their level of engagement increased due to laptop use. Only 39% of the control group students felt the same. This is a differece of 21%, significant to p<.001.


3. Student attentiveness due to laptop use jumps 12%

When presented with the statement "My attentiveness has increased due to laptop use," 37% of LectureTools students agreed or strongly agreed, a 12% jump over the control group, where just 25% of students agreed or strongly agreed. Through deliberate engagement of laptops and an easier path to communication with instructors and teaching assistants, it only makes sense that more students find incentive to pay attention and interact with lecture.


Read More About U-M CRLT's Findings

crlt 50 logoDownload the occassional paper "Use of Laptops in the Classroom: Research and Best Practices" from the University of Michigan's Center for Research on Learning and Teaching to learn more about LectureTools' impact on several U-M classrooms, and tips for beneficial laptop use in the classroom.

Download the CRLT Paper (PDF)

Topics: classroom engagement strategies, interactive classroom technology, enhance student engagement, Teaching with Technology, Engaging Students in the Classroom, Educational Technology, student engagement, student engagement strategies, Laptops in Education, Learning Outcomes

How to Flip Your Class with LectureTools!

Posted by Katherine Pfeiffer on Wed, Feb 22, 2012 @ 06:02 AM
Are you being dragged kicking and screaming into the 21st Century, or are you dancing with joy when you find a new and cool education technology?

Either way, LectureTools offers a fantastic and easy solution to flip your classroom.  Some of you may ask what I mean by flipping a classroom, check out my last blog: The Flipped Classroom: Teaching and Learning in the 21st Century

Have you been thinking about how to flip your classroom?  Are you not sure what technology to use?  Let’s take a look at how LectureTools can help support your flipped classroom.

lecturetools flipped classroom

LectureTools is an interactive student response system.  It was designed to connect instructors with students in a synchronous face-to-face interactive environment.  However, take a new technology like LectureTools mixed with bright innovative teachers, and, voila!  You have an awesome and easy way to FLIP YOUR CLASS TODAY!

You may ask “what is so special about LectureTools?”

LectureTools offers everything the instructor needs to present materials to their students for a flipped class. 

  • EMBEDDED VIDEO - With the ability to embed both native (your own recorded video) and YouTube videos directly into the lecture slides students can seamlessly review their lecture, video clip to slides, then back to video clips.
  • ORGANIZED NOTE-TAKING - LectureTools also offers a very organized place for students to type their notes along side the lecture slides.  This keeps everything together in one neat place.
  • INTERACTIVE ACTIVITIES - LectureTools was designed to be an interactive student response system, so there are interactive activities that the instructor can insert to test the students’ understanding as they are going through their lecture.  Teachers can assess any misconceptions and address them in the next in class session.  These interactive activities are multiple-choice question, free response answer, re-ordered quiz, and our all-time favorite, the image quiz.
  • QUESTION & ANSWER INTERFACE - Finally, one of the greatest features that LectureTools offers both students and instructors is the question interface.  As students sit in their lecture (whether real time or synchronous) they may type in questions to their instructors.  All questions will be answered and shared anonymously with the entire class.  This is the virtual way of raising your hand and hoping to be called on, however in this format students’ questions can always be recognized.

Sign on to see what my flipped lecture of the study of the cell looks like:

Go to: https://my.lecturetools.com/ and use the following credentials:

email address: icon20@lecturetools.com

password: icon2011






Topics: emerging technologies in education, interactive classroom technology, Teaching with Technology, Student-Instructor Interaction, Engaging Students in the Classroom, Classroom Response Systems, Educational Technology, Student Response Systems, Flipped Instruction, Laptops in Education, The Flipped Classroom, Cloud Computing, Using Multimedia During Class

How to Get the Best Results with LectureTools

Posted by Christopher Machielse on Fri, Aug 5, 2011 @ 09:08 AM

LectureTools has been designed with input from students and instructors to make class more engaging and to increase student attentiveness. To achieve the best results, however, quality pedagogy is essential.

When teaching new technologies, it is important to keep student learning in mind. Technology is only a tool – new instructional technology can give you more knives in the drawer, but you are still the chef.

A University of Michigan Center for Research on Learning and Teaching study (PDF link) identified several “good” instructional practices that are supported through use of LectureTools, including frequent assessment of student learning, teaching with a rapid feedback cycle, and reflection on learning.

Three Levels of LectureTools Use by Faculty

The CRLT study used faculty interviews and student feedback to code how each course was taught. Researchers found that LectureTools use fell into three distinct categories:

  1. Presentation: Instructor uploads slides and presents information while students take notes.
  2. Interaction: Instructor uploads slides and then presents information, polls students using the integrated student response system, and utilized the student inquiry tool.
  3. Reflection: Instructor not only presents information in slides and asks questions, but also modifies the lecture based on student responses, reflects on class responses, and uses questions or responses for group work or class activities.

Wieman has argued that interactive teaching improves student learning, and the three categories of LectureTools can easily be ordered from least interactive (Presentation) to most (Reflection).

Differences in Engagement, Attentiveness, and Learning by Teaching Style

After categorizing each course into the appropriate level of use, the researchers compared student perceptions of attentiveness, engagement, and learning.


Identified Perceptions of Levels

  Attentiveness increased due to LectureTools LectureTools helped me to be engaged Learned more due to LectureTools
3.67* 3.83* 3.62*
3.39* 3.51* 3.49*
2.48 2.69 2.38

*Significant difference versus Presentation level classes with p<.001
1=significantly decreased, 5=significantly increased


Unsurprisingly, the data reveals that students in both interactive and reflective courses are significantly more attentive and engaged than their peers in presentation-based courses. Additionally, these students feel that they have learned more.

Conclusion and Best Practices

The CRLT study reveals that the more instructors take advantage of the interactive features of LectureTools, the more students feel they are much more engaged and attentive during class.

To achieve best results with LectureTools, it is important to use the interactive activities and the student inquiry channel. To move your class into the "Reflection" level use the activity results and student questions to help shape the lecture, facilitate peer instruction during and after activities, and spend time talking about student responses.


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Topics: classroom engagement strategies, emerging technologies in education, interactive classroom technology, Teaching with Technology, Student-Instructor Interaction, Engaging Students in the Classroom, Classroom Response Systems, Educational Technology, instructor interaction, instructor communication, student engagement, student engagement strategies, Student Response Systems, Laptops in Education, Learning Outcomes