Practitioner Enquiry
Stephanie McGuinness
Psychology teacher and curriculum manager, study support
"Ask the Audience – Just a bit of fun or a valuable learning tool?"


·         In starter or plenary activities students (especially at GCSE level) don’t always participate. They have a tendency to just say ‘I don’t know’ or ‘I didn’t get to that one’.
·         Vocal students often dominate questioning leaving teachers unsure of the quieter student’s understanding
·         Audience Response Systems (ARS) have been shown to increase participation and promote discussion
Key Actions
·         Firstly I had to learn how to use the college ARS – Optivote
·         A bank of GCSE Psychology MCQ was created within the Optivote program
·         Data was collected from every voting session
·         Student opinion was collected via an evaluative ARS questionnaire
Key Findings
·         80% of the students enjoyed using the ARS in class
·         80% of the students felt it helped them learn new topics
·         86.7% of the students felt that repeating the voting helped them with revision
·         When voting sessions were repeated several classes later, 100% of the students got the same or higher percentage correct.
·         Using a similar class as a control group and calculating a group mean for each end of topic assessment the experimental group had a higher mean for every assessment.
·         When near the end of the course the voting sessions were repeated as a means of revision, 67% of students achieved a score equal to or higher than at least one previous attempt.

For further information on this project, please contact:

 Click here to read full article