Ubiquitous Classroom Response System: An Innovative Approach to Support the Active Learning Model

By Ricardo Caceffo and Heloisa Vieira da Rocha.

Published by Ubiquitous Learning: An International Journal

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Article: Electronic $US5.00

The Active Learning Model, based on the constructivism theory, allows students to have an active role in their own learning process. The model stimulates the construction of an environment where exists an effective interaction between students and teacher, supported by activities that motivate this kind of behavior.

Currently the technology supports the Active Learning Model by the use of Classroom Response Systems. These systems, usually supported by pen-based technology (e.g. Tablet PCs), allows the teacher to propose questions to the students, that submit their answers electronically back to the teacher. Then, that answers can be aggregated and displayed to the students, which facilitates the teacher's feedback and the classroom collaboration and discussion.

However, studies involving the use of Classroom Response Systems show that this kind of system generate student's loss of attention and focus. Also, the specific use of a single device limits the use of technology, not considering the increasing presence of many different types of devices in the classroom.

In that way, this work described the creation of a Ubiquitous Classroom Response System (UCRS), a framework that uses the ubiquitous computing main concepts in order to support the Active Learning in classroom. In order to support a natural and not invasive use of technology, the UCRS uses context information (profile, historical and physical) to allow the creation of a dynamic environment where students can use any available mobile device to answer the teacher's questions, interact with each other and receive feedback.

Also, UCRS allows immediate change between private and public interaction, allowing the students to focus on the task regardless the device that has been used.

Keywords: Active Learning, Classroom Response System, Ubiquitous Learning, Ubiquitous Computing, Learning

Ubiquitous Learning: An International Journal, Volume 3, Issue 1, pp.43-56. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 621.717KB).

Ricardo Caceffo

PhD Student, Institute of Computing, University of Campinas, Unicamp, Brazil

Ricardo Edgard Caceffo holds an MSc degree in Computer Science from UNICAMP, Brazil. He is currently a PhD student at same university, having as research interests: active and collaborative learning, HCI, pen based computing, ubiquitous computing and the design and development of architectures and frameworks to support the active learning model in the classroom. Also, presented and published a paper in the 2009 WIPTE (Workshop on the Impact of Pen Based Technology on Education) realized at Virginia Tech University (USA). In the same year the author received an International Prize in the Imagine Cup world finals at Cairo, Egypt, in the category “Tablet PC Accessibility Award”.

Dr. Heloisa Vieira da Rocha

Computer Science Professor, Institute of Computing, University of Campinas, Unicamp, Brazil

Graduation in Computer Science from State University of Campinas (1975), Masters in Computer Science from State University of Campinas (1981) and Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Universidade Estadual de Campinas (1991). She is currently an assistant professor at the Institute of Computer and researcher at the Center for Applied Computer Science Education, State University of Campinas.