Using Socrative for Formative Assessments

Innovative teachers use formative assessments to know what each student is thinking.  In my own work as a teacher of K-12 students and as someone who works directly with teachers and administrators, I have struggled to balance the demands of gathering input from all of my students while attempting to cover all of my course content. While visiting a high school, I encountered the promising online tool Socrative. During this visit, teachers showcased how the tool can be used as a student response system that supports formative assessment. Socrative helps teachers get quick feedback from their entire class so they know how many students are staying with them, or if they need to cover the expectations for upcoming presentations again. Teachers can use the devices like “clickers” that are present in many middle- and high-school classes (often math), but without the need for the hardware, since it can operate from phones or laptops with internet access.     

I’ve also observed teachers use Socrative as a platform for small group work, administering short quizzes, and as a way to let students vote on how the day’s class will proceed. Among the strengths of Socrative is its low barrier for adoption—it is still free and requires little time or tech-savvy to set up. One reviewer commented that its simple design would allow it to be used in elementary classrooms that have sufficient devices with internet access. 

Have you used Socrative? In what ways is it effective in your teaching? What are other technology tools that help you conduct formative assessments in your classroom?

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