There are some classroom technologies that can help you better reach participants in large classes:

Acknowledging student needs and reasons for taking your class:

  • Make certain your curriculum has entry points for students of all levels; your course is likely to be a gateway course to a discipline, and everyone deserves a chance to come away with the basics. Some students may be disadvantaged by being under-challenged in the course, while others are hearing about course concepts for the first time. High-achievers may be able to engage in more advanced material by using various delivery methods, while those who are less-familiar with materials can get what they need from the standard content.
    • How can technology help?
      • “Game” your course to unlock higher levels for those who show higher proficiencies. Often a small amount of extra credit for overachievers can result in great satisfaction — giving extra credit for excellent student answers on the Q&A tool, Piazza, available through Blackboard, has proven highly effective in other large courses
      • Allow your learners to repeat and practice key course concepts via low-stakes evaluations, such as self-grading quizzes with instant feedback. Those who already know some content will breeze through, and those needing to re-listen and repeat can do so privately, as many times as they like
      • Is a midterm and final enough feedback to see how your students are doing? You might consider some machine-graded tests or quizzes, in order to perform more frequent assessments. The McGraw Center for Teaching and Learning has a Scantron you could use to quickly grade exams, and get usable analytics regarding performance
      • Provide your materials in more than one way – written text, diagrams, video and audio, or perhaps, lecture capture. With much to choose from, each student can find his or own comfort level in terms of attaining knowledge
      • Make sure that high-stakes assessments, such as exams, are fair to all participants, and use other avenues to knowledge, such as described above, up to the individual student’s discretion. Your best-performing student is not necessarily your most successful teaching story