Here are some ways to use Choice:
Thinking about existing knowledge
Pedagogically, the choice activity can be used to provide an opportunity to share starting points through which learners are encouraged to think about and articulate existing knowledge and understandings of a topic. For example, you can ask students to make 'choices' about a statement such as "in learning to become a teacher, the most significant issue for me is" (giving the following choices): trust, theoretical underpinnings, communication or delivering materials to students.
This has two benefits:
- It forces participants to engage with their choice and think, in advance of a further related activity (you might wish to follow up such a choice activity with a forum discussion or a reflective activity like the online text assignment), about the context and consequences of this choice.
- It allows tutors and students to gain a better understanding of existing views/understandings/knowledge related to the question, idea or concept at hand in the Choice activity.
For some students, the choice activity is a secure way to gauge their understanding of a topic without asking them in public: with a question such as "how well did you understand this module?" students can honestly select from "very well", "OK" or "I stil don't get it", safe in the knowledge only their teacher knows their response and they will not be shamed in front of their peers.
The choice activity in Moodle only allows a participant to select one choice from a variety of options (that you provide), but you may set the activity so that participants can change their choices - thus, as students make progress and gain confidence, they might want to update their choice to reflect this. You can also set the activity so that it 'closes' or 'locks down' on a specific date, making all choices final from that point on. This allows participants to change their minds several times before a final date.
Using Choice at Royal Roads to encourage participation
Jane Wilson uses Choice to encourage participation, integrating it with discussion forums in an accounting preparatory course as she explains in the video below.
Choice is often used as a way for the students to organize into teams. Additionally, choice can be used as a selection tool for any activity.
Using Choice at Royal Roads to select seminar readings
Bernard Schissel has been using Choice in an innovative way with his doctoral students, as he explains in the video below. Bernard uses Choice to ask students, during pre-residency, to choose which readings they wish present in their on-campus residency seminars. This ensures students take responsibility for their readings before they arrive on campus for residency.
Contact your instructional designer if you are interested in using the Choice polling activity in your course.
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