Polling is a commonly used technique for introducing interactivity into a presentation, workshop, or meeting. Polling can be used to get a sense of what your students are thinking or feeling, taking attendance, soliciting feedback from the class, or conduct quizzes. It’s a great way to promote active learning, leverage motivation, and empower students to draw from their prior life and learning experiences.
Polling techniques can range from low tech to high tech. Low tech polling options include asking students to raise their hands to vote for an option, write their answer on a paper and hold it up or pass it to the front, vote by moving to areas of the room, or asking learners to write their ideas on the whiteboard. Technology-assisted polling often utilizes computers, mobile-devices, or “clickers” to allow students to respond to the poll questions. This can be done in real-time (in person or virtually) or asynchronously.
You should also consider whether you want the polling results to be anonymous or not. Anonymous polling can allow space for students to be more vulnerable, be more honest, or take risks. However, in some cases, such as using polls as quizzes, you may need to see whether someone responded in order to give points/credit.