An Innovative Approach to Student Feedback

As I come to the end of another academic year, I took the time to reflect on some learning that I was involved in over the past number of years. Engaging with technology for teaching and learning purposes is important to support teaching and learning, but building technological artefacts was probably one of the most beneficial learning experiences I have been involved in to date.

As part of my MSc in Computer Science Educational Research programme, my research was centred around the effectiveness of student satisfaction relating to pedagogical approaches in Junior Cycle coding. This was also used to help initiate teacher reflections of possible pedagogical approaches relating to the new specification, so therefore teachers are actively involved in reflection (as outlined in the Cosán National Framework).

The project involved the development of two artefacts: digital and physical artefacts. The digital component involved a mobile application (via Thunkable) in which students submitted their evaluation of the lesson using only emoji representations. Access was via a QR code in the classroom. The qualitative data was collated and analysed using an Airtable, thus allowing teachers to reflect on student feedback almost instantly. The mobile application was also extended to integrate student voice and agency by allowing students to submit ideas and suggestions for future lessons based on their learning experiences.

The image below shows the procress of the artefact design:

The physical component consisted of a Raspberry Pi Zero WH computer system with additional clicky buttons (Pimoroni Keybow mechanical keyboard) for data input, with each button correlating to emoji representations. The physical artefact aimed to provide a holistic view of student wellbeing relating to the learning activities and their experiences. It is important to note that the design of the artefacts were to incorporate student wellbeing into the classroom rather than acting as a wellbeing “indicator” as such.

The image below shows some mobile application screens designed using Thunkable app builder:

The results from the physical artefact and digital artefact combined generated a teacher reflection template with prompts attached for initial teacher reflection. This allowed teachers to visually compare pedagogical approaches in terms of student satisfaction, and was an innovative method of obtaining feedback. The data obtained was used to generate pie charts using emoji-based representations from an Airtable. These were then used to help with teachers to reflect on student feedback instantly!

The image below shows an example of student feedback for game-based learning and collaborative learning pedagogical approaches:

The video below shows a quick demonstration of both the physical and digital artefacts in the classroom.

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