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					      Interaction Patterns with a Classroom Feedback System:
                      Making Time for Feedback
            Richard Anderson‫ ,٭‬Ruth                                               Anderson‡,                  Tammy VanDeGrift‫ ,٭‬Steven A. Wolfman‫ ,٭‬and Ken Yasuhara‫٭‬
The Classroom Feedback System (CFS)
                            Understand and expand the role of student interaction                                                     Designed                            a classroom feedback system supporting simple,
                            in large classes through technological interventions.                                                                                         contextual, student-initiated feedback
   We believe student interaction and engagement are critical to learning.                                                            system:
   Therefore, we designed CFS to study and encourage one step of the
   interaction process: soliciting feedback. By providing a radically different                                                       Simple: feedback is                     Contextual: annotations                    Student-initiated: like hand-raising
   feedback mechanism from hand-raising, CFS creates the opportunity to                                                               drawn from a fixed list of              are attached to a stable,                  but unlike poll/quiz-based computer-
   understand patterns of interaction that are usually suppressed in large classes.                                                   options designed by the                 shared context: a location                 mediated systems, students decide
                                                                                                                                      students and instructor.                on the class slides.                       when to contribute.
                                    Engineer a learning environment through
      Method:                       iterative design, intervention, and study.
   Using Ann Brown’s “design experiment” methodology, we designed CFS for
   large, university classes. Our design process is detailed in the following table:

      Class                                        Data                                         System         Participants
  Intro Comp.        Observation                                                          None                 N/A
  Fluency in         Observations, artifacts, instructor interview        Pen-and-paper                        1 day, 9
  Info. Tech.                                                             prototype                            students
  Fluency in         Observations, artifacts, instructor interview, logs, Pen-and-paper +                      1 day, 14
  Info. Tech.        student survey, focus groups                         computer protos.                     students
                                                                                                                                       Student view: shows the current and last                           Instructor view: current slide and
  Intro Comp. Observations, artifacts, instructor interview, logs, Full system                                 3 weeks, 12             viewed slides. Here, the student gives                             surrounding slides (miniature) summarize
  Science     student survey, focus groups, class-wide survey                                                  students                feedback on the last slide.                                        student feedback including feedback
                                                                                                                                                                                                          from the figure to the left.

           Prospective Feedback:                                                                                                                       Retrospective Feedback:
           Student-Guided Lecture Pattern                                                                                                              Feedback Lag Pattern
  Scenario: The instructor, Jane,                                                                                                               Scenario: During an example of
  begins her discussion of program                                                                                                              iterators, Bob, a student, is confused
  structure. As the slide comes up, a                                                                                                           by a call to He doesn’t
  student notices the unfamiliar term                                                                                                           ask about it quite yet because the
  “#include.” He annotates it, asking                                                                                                           instructor, Jane, is still discussing the
  for more explanation. Jane sees the                                                                                                           code. When she finishes and moves
  annotation but ignores it for now                                                                                                             on to the next slide, Bob decides to
  since she hasn’t reached that point                                                                                                           annotate, requesting
  on the slide. When she does, she                                                                                                              more explanation. After a minute,
  circles “#include” and spends extra                                                                                                           Jane notices the feedback and
  time defining the term and relating it                                                                                                        responds to it, returning to the
  to program structure.                                                                                                                         previous slide.

  Pattern: a student annotates early (ahead of lecture), and the                                                                                Feedback lag: a student delays her question until the instructor
  instructor later folds the annotation into her discussion. Though a                                                                           concludes his point (because he might be about to answer the
  successful episode of feedback and response, the exchange is                                                                                  question). But once he has clearly proceeded to the next point, the
  invisible to most of the class.                                                                                                               question seems out ofwhose and is left has been left behind simply
                                                                                                                                                Pattern: a student place question unasked.
  We     initially  considered early                                      Key enabling features of CFS:                                         annotates the previous slide. The instructor sees the annotation on
  annotations a weakness because                                           Context available to students                                       his slide summary (left of the figure above) and decides when and
  giving spoken feedback early would                                      early:
                                                                                                                                                whether to go back and address the question.
  be socially unacceptable.                                                    The slide is revealed early enough to
                                                                                                                                                                                                             Students’ response in latest study:
                                                                               make this pattern possible.
                                                                                                                                                Early           observations/studies                          CFS helped all who suffered feedback
  However, the instructor found this                                       Context shared with instructor:
                                                                                                                                                suggested feed-back lag inhibited                            lag
  pattern effective. He described his                                          The instructor can understand the
                                                                               context of annotations quickly.                                  interaction (e.g., 3 of 12 students in                        2 others suffered feedback lag with
  response to an annotation on the                                                                                                              one survey felt the fast pace left                           CFS
  word ‘reference’:                                                            Furthermore, he can decide whether
                                                                               to postpone responding based solely                              their questions behind).                                      2 students reported “feedback lag”
                                                                               on the geometry of the slide.                                                                                                 strategies
     “…if I’m smooth enough… the                                                                                                                In response, we designed CFS to                                 (e.g., “My strategy was to let him talk about
                                            Mechanism to close the feedback
     class will just think ‘Oh, he’s going                                                                                                      allow feedback on the previous                               a bullet
     to talk about reference now.’ …                                                                                                            slide and show that feedback to the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                 point completely before I clicked.”)
                                              The instructor can write on the slide,
     [To them,] here’s something that         closing the loop of interaction with                                                              instructor.                           Instructor’s response in latest study:
     for some reason I decided to talk                                                                                                                                                 questions exposed important
     The computer-mediated feedback system enabled agave the feedback
     about towards the end of the
                                              the student who
                                                                 novel pattern                                                                        Persistently available context for Felt late feedback wasfeedback and
                                              and bringing the rest of the class into                                                                                                 often
       of interaction which would be impossible without intervention.
     slide.”                                  the discussion.                                                                                       that was previously unvoiced but did not effectively weave it into
                                                                                                                                                                                          responded (sometimes on previous
                                                                                                                                                                           the class discussion.
 Acknowledgments                                                                                    Contact information                                                                Found it upset his normal pacing
We thank the many students, teaching assistants, and instructors who gave feedback on CFS and
participated in studies. We also thank innumerable (well, technically numerable) colleages at our   University of Washington, Computer Science & Engineering   ‫٭‬CS&E, U. of Washington                            ‡CS, U. of Virginia
institutions and the Microsoft Research Learning Sciences & Technology Group. We thank the          Education & Educational Technology Research Group           Seattle, WA 98195-2350                            Charlottesville, VA 22904-4740
blind reviewers for feedback and the “prospective” and “retrospective” feedback phrases. This              {anderson,tammy,wolf,yasuhara}
work was supported in part by grants from Microsoft Research and Intel.

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