WHAT IS POLL EVERYWHERE?
Poll Everywhere (http://www.polleverywhere.com) is a web-based application for audience participation. It can bring more interactivity into your classes to further engage students in the learning experience.
Quick link: (Request an instructor account.)
Using a simple web form, you can create a poll for a specific class and students can vote via cell phone, text messages, or any web-enabled device (smart phones, tablets, laptops, etc.). The polls update seconds after students enter their votes, and results can be displayed on the presenting screen (or not if using the poll for quizzes). You can choose to display the poll within a web browser, or embedded in a presentation. No special software or equipment is required.
There is no cost to students to use the software. Individuals may be charged for text messaging, depending on their cell phone plan. Using a web browser to submit poll answers is free.
Some of the ways polls can be used include:
To gather data
To take the classroom temperature
To immediately assess understanding of concepts
To challenge perceptions or misconceptions (create cognitive dissonance)
Live classroom quizzes and exams
Or they can be more open-ended polls, allowing students to type in questions as they come up
Instructors and new Poll Everywhere users are encouraged to begin by using anonymous polling in their classes. This will allow time to become familiar with the software and develop expertise in administering polls during classes. Anonymous polling will not require students to register for an account to respond and requires less administration.
HOW DOES POLL EVERYWHERE WORK?
Each poll is given a code upon creation. Whether you are displaying your poll within a presentation or as a web page, you will then give students the code when you want them to begin voting. If students are using their phones, they will text their responses to the code, or they can use Twitter to vote on their smart phones or computers. Students can also vote on the poll’s web page using an embedded voting widget, or on their smart phones using pollev.com.
Poll Everywhere has a helpful tutorial here: http://www.polleverywhere.com/how-it-works
Please note that if you are using a Mac, you should make sure your software is updated to Mac OS X 10.6 or greater. Apple Keynote ‘09+ or Microsoft PowerPoint 2011 for Mac are optionally required for use within a presentation.
STEP-BY-STEP POLL EVERYWHERE HOW-TO:
Request a Poll Everywhere account from The Office for Teaching Excellence and discuss best uses for your class. As of Fall, 2014, the JHUSON has purchased and institutional license that allow individual instructors to use Poll Everywhere in any or all of the courses that they are teaching without limitations.
Create your poll – log into Poll Everywhere and click on “My Polls” at the top of the screen, then click “Create New Poll” in the top left-hand corner.
Enter in your poll question, and hit the ‘return’ or ‘enter’ key on your keyboard.
Now you are given the opportunity to convert your question to multiple choice, or keep it as a free text question. If you are creating a multiple choice question, click ‘convert to multiple choice’ and type in your choices, then hit ‘continue’.
If you would like to use a keyword for responses, instead of the numerical code automatically assigned, click ‘edit’ under the big ‘stop poll’ button at the right of the screen. Click ‘customize this keyword’ to type in the keyword you’d like to use. Then press “save poll” at the bottom.
To download the poll as a Power Point slide on a Mac, you will need to download Mac Presenter, the link for this is underneath the ‘download as slide’ button at the right of the screen. Click to download, and then you will need to install the Poll Everywhere app by dragging the chart icon into your applications folder. Open the Poll Everywhere app from your applications folder and it will ask you to pick a poll. Use the drop down menu to select the poll you’d like to embed in your Power Point Presentation. If you click on your poll, a bar will appear at the bottom. Select the P+ icon to insert the poll into the current slide in your PowerPoint presentation (You will need to make sure you have Power Point open to the slide in which you are inserting your poll).
Prepare to use it the first time by testing it out with support staff before class begins.
Prepare students – let them know how they may respond to the poll (text or via website). Start out with a low stakes poll so they can learn to do it with less stress. If there are any problems with students voting during the test poll, address these issues so that the next time students will be able to focus on the question and not how to vote.
Troubleshooting: for more detailed explanations of issues not covered here, see Poll Everywhere’s Help and FAQ page here: http://www.polleverywhere.com/faq
Learn more about Poll Everywhere’s features at http://www.polleverywhere.com/how-it-works.
SAMPLE LANGUAGE FOR SYLLABUS
We will be using Poll Everywhere in this class. Poll Everywhere is a web-based application that allows students to participate in lecture by voting with either text messages sent via their phone or by visiting a web page on an internet-enabled device (Smartphone, tablet, laptop). Instructions will be displayed on-screen. The poll that is embedded within the presentation or web page will update in real time. While there is no cost to use this software, standard text messaging rates will apply if you use your phone.
Please bring your phone or device with you to the first day of class.
POLL EVERYWHERE PRESENTER SOFTWARE
Poll Everywhere Presenter software is installed in all of the larger lecture classrooms in the SON Pinkard Building, including 140, 202, 217, and 305. If you would like Poll Everywhere Presenter PowerPoint add-in installed on your SON office computer, please contact the SON HELP desk at Son-Helpdesk@jhu.edu with your request.
HOW DO I MAKE SURE THAT STUDENTS RESPONDING TO A POLL VIA A WEB BROWSER SEE MY POLLS?
Set up your PollEv.com webpage (Settings > Personal Info > PollEv.com page) by giving it a name. Your last name or class name is fine. This is the web address that will appear in your poll instructions.
When you start the poll, you will need to push the poll out to your website in order for students to see it. Simply press the button next to the Start Poll button.
The default time that a poll will remain on your webpage is 3 hours. You can adjust this as well on the Settings > Personal Info page.
HOW DO I CHECK THE STATUS OF THE POLL EVERYWHERE SERVICE?
Poll Everywhere posts its system status updates at http://status.polleverywhere.com.