Clickers Instructors Getting Started

Want to use clickers in your classroom? Our Berkeley-specific support documents will help you get started using the iClicker Classic (formerly known as i>clicker) system, including integration with bCourses.

Make sure you have the hardware and software that you’ll need:

Hardware 

If you don't already have one, you’ll need an iClicker instructor kit, free to instructors. To order, use the iClicker instructor kit order form. This kit will contain a base receiver, instructor clicker, student clicker and USB cable. The instructor clicker can also be used as a presentation remote to advance slides, start/stop polls, view results and laser point. (Note: If you have an older black receiver, you will need to upgrade to the model shown in order to use the current software. Contact the rep for a free upgrade.)
blue i>clicker instructor remote and white i>clicker base

Software 

Get the current version of the UC Berkeley-customized iClicker Classic software: 

  • If you have never downloaded a UC Berkeley-customed version  of  i>clicker 7.4.5  or later, follow the instructions on our Download iClicker software help page. 
  • If you have already downloaded a UC Berkeley-customized version of i>clicker 7.4.5 or later, open your iClicker application, select Help > Check for Update, and follow the prompts to update to the latest version.

Note: If you have had an instructor kit for more than 3 years, you should check to be sure your base has the latest firmware in order to work with the current version of the software. See our Firmware upgrade help article.

 

Then, for each course in which you want to use clickers, you should do the following:

Make sure your students have their clickers ready-to-go before the semester starts:

  1. Order clickers from the bookstore for your students as you would a book or reader. (Use ISBN 9781319149246 for iClicker +; this is the standard clicker that allows for multiple choice responses only. Use ISBN 9781319149581 for iClicker 2, which you should only require if you need students to be able to provide numeric or alphanumeric responses.) If you do not know how to put in a bookstore order, email text@berkeley.edu to let the bookstore know to order clickers for your course.

  2. Enable iClicker registration for the course in bCourses. See our Make the iClicker registration tool visible in bCourses help doc.

  3. Make sure students in the course know to get a clicker (if they don't already have one) and register it in bCourses. We suggest you point them to the Students Getting Started page. The vendor also has a help page with student prep resources (a syllabus template and Powerpoint slides you can present. Both need to be downloaded, slightly edited to indicate your requirements, and then provided to students.) Note: these require you to indicate whether or not you will enable REEF for mobile support; for more info about this, start with our Help article, "Mobile support for iClicker". Also, in the portion of the template that has you specify your LMS, you should use "bCourses".

Set up the software:

Think about your course objectives and create your first question(s) to use with clickers:

  • Prepare the questions (typically with multiple choice answers) that you will ask students to respond to. You can present questions in any manner you want, either verbally or visually; most instructors include the questions and answers in their Powerpoint or Keynote presentations. See Clicker Best Practices for ideas for creating engaging questions. 

Use clickers in class and get the results into bCourses:

  1. Run your first clicker poll(s). This is as simple as displaying your question, telling iClicker to listen for answers, and telling your students to turn on their clickers and respond to the question you’ve displayed. See Running an iClicker poll for details.
    You may also want to provide subsequent activities in class to engage your students based on the results of your poll.

  2. Sometime after running the poll(s), you’ll want to synch the data you’ve collected on your laptop with bCourses:

    1. Especially at the beginning of the semester, it’s a good idea to update your iClicker roster with new registration information (to account for your add/drop period and/or to  reflect late registrations). See Synchronize your roster

    2. Then, you should get the data from your poll(s) into bCourses. See Upload your iClicker Scores to bCourses.

From this point on, you’ll be repeating the above steps, i.e. creating more questions, running more polls and uploading the data to bCourses. Note that you don’t have to synchronize your roster and upload data to bCourses after every class; you can wait until you want to do something with the data. We strongly suggest, however, that you ensure that the rosters are synchronized and that all students have registered their clickers and are getting points near the beginning of the semester (perhaps right after the add/drop period ends) to alleviate issues later on.

If you experience any technical problems with bCourses, please let us know by using the options available in the “Contact Us” module on the top right of this page.





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