Technology and Assessment
Classroom Computer Management Software
The Department of Mathematics and Statistics is exploring a number of product options for managing computer use in lab classrooms. Products such as SMART Sync and LANDesk Classroom Manager not only connect the lab computers, they provide a number of features that increase student engagement and opportunities for formative classroom assessment. The typical set up is for the instructor to have two computer monitors, one with the class content and one which displays all other monitors in the lab. Using these products, instructors can monitor all student activity, broadcast the instructor screen or any student screen to all screens or to the overhead projector, answer questions through email, and set up collaborative chats and workgroups. These features give students the opportunity to demonstrate their understanding visually in addition to orally, and ask the instructor or other group members for help with specific content. Polling technology similar to that associated with clicker-type student response systems is also included, allowing for additional checks on understanding and more formal quizzes. This technology can also be used in regular classrooms with wireless connectivity to student laptops.
Research is limited on this technology. Joyce and Schmidl (2008) found that the final grade average was raised a full step, fewer students failed, and the range of scores was reduced in the introduction to computers classes at Central Carolina Community College that used classroom management software compared to classes that did not.
If you are interested in finding out more about these products and how they will be used in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics, you can contact Jim Blum at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Last modified April 1, 2009