We do have some more research projects focused on technology that are brewing, but in the meantime, we’re asking your help to spread the news about career-related research projects in which we are involved. Would you consider participating if you’re eligible? Or perhaps spread the news if you know someone who is? Each are either approved by Florida State University’s IRB or have informed consent waived. If you have questions about any research on this page, please email Dr. Osborn. Click on the links to participate. Thanks for the consideration and help!
Maybe you’ve heard about Kahoot? Engaged in a game but always wondered about how to go about creating your own? Never heard of it but are curious? If you answered yes to any of these questions, stay tuned, as we dive into the fun world of Kahooting!
What is Kahoot? Kahoot is a “game-based learning platform.” meaning, that it facilitates teaching and learning through the use of an online, quick-paced game. Players log in to a game on their phone or computer, input a code to access the game assigned by their instructor, are shown questions and enter or choose a response. Speed adds points, which creates a competitive edge. The game can occur in real time during a class or presentation or can be accessed outside of class time for prep or review.
Why Kahoot? Kahoot is a very easy way to begin or break up a lecture or presentation, and get everyone involved with minimal risk of embarrassment. It also is a good gauge of what students know or believe, and can provide a way for me to correct misperceptions or clear up confusion.
What do I Kahoot? As an instructor, I create questions based on what my desired outcome is.
Is my goal simple engagement? Then I might ask some fun questions related to the topic or something relevant to what’s happening in our community, or a season, such as this question on Halloween (which also features a picture reveal):
If I want to see comprehension or content knowledge, my questions will reflect that:
As you can see, the “item stems” are not very long or complicated, which allows for quick play. Once the question is presented, students have 20 seconds (that can be adjusted) to choose their answer.
How do I create a Kahoot? It’s very easy to create a Kahoot game. Go to the site; https://create.kahoot.it and create an account. After that, you can start by clicking on the discover button and see popular games, but also search to see if there’s content already created for your topic that you can use. If you decide you want to create your own, click on the create button, and you’ll get this screen:
You can choose different options from all the drop down menus, and add as many questions as you like. Once you’re done, you’ll save it, and then it will be ready to play or invite others to play!
How long should my game be? It depends on the purpose. If it’s a stand-alone game, with the purpose of reviewing concepts, you can have more questions. I’ve found that the absolute max # of questions is 10. That gives newcomers time to learn how to play, and also allows for trends to develop and change-ups in the scoreboard to occur. Beyond that, and it loses its impact.
How do I invite users to my game? When you’re ready to play, you’ll click on “play,” and get the options on how you want the Kahoot to be played. In this case, I chose teach, which then opened another window with all sort of options. Once I’ve selected my options, I click on “play this Kahoot,” and the screen with the pin # emerges. You can either have students/participants open the game as an app, or go to the website (https://kahoot.it) and enter the pin #.
Any other tips?
Tip 1: I tend to use as many pictures as I can with my Kahoots, as can be seen with my group counseling theory Kahoot:
I find that it encourages more application/critical thinking that just plain regurgitation of content.
Tip 2: Also, I typically pause between questions to address the topic, learn what led to the different responses – even if there is just one wrong answer (a bar graph shows the distribution of answers).
Tip 3: Also, make sure they are prompted to only use “g-rated” nicknames.
Tip 4: Keep the sound on (it adds to the game-like feel) and don’t forget to stay for the end of the show so they can see who makes the podium – students get really frustrated when you exit out before that point!
What are QR codes? According to that all knowing source, Wikipedia, QR codes are defined as “a type of matrix barcode first designed in 1994 for the automotive industry in Japan. A barcode is a machine-readable optical label that contains information about the item to which it is attached.” Usually, it looks like a box (although it could be a different shape) with black/white dots, lines and squares in it.
Aren’t they old school? Just a fad? Several years ago, I (Deb) was teaching a technology and counseling course, and showed my students how to create a QR code as the new, cool thing. I was seeing them around town as a fast way to get to information instead of typing in a long url – but you had to download a QR scanner app to your phone, and there were very few tools out there to create them. And then, they started to disappear.
Enter the pandemic-and the re-emergence. As everything went virtual, I started noticing those funky little QR codes popping up everywhere – advertisements, in church (“scan to find out more”), and eventually, in my students’ class presentations. When they wanted the class to play a game, use a collaborative tool such as slido or drive, or look at an article or website, they included a QR Code. They didn’t even bother with tiny url. Realizing that this was a way they preferred to get their information, at least in presentations, I started incorporating them as well.
How to create and access QR codes. Creating a QR code has become much more simple. There are many different tools available, but I use QR code Generator. You can make anything a QR code, such as text, a website, a picture, a link to a video, music. For this software, you put the website url, or whatever it is you want to create a QR code for into the box on the left, and before you know it, the program will generate a QR code on the right. At that point, I typically screenshot the box/code and then put it into my slide.
Accessing the QR code. Students with a smartphone can use the camera function and hold it up to the QR code, and the url will be suggested for them to click on and follow. Because not everyone has a smartphone, I also always include a tiny url, especially for a long website address. In the case below, I include the QR code, the original website (mostly to show it is a reputable source), and the tiny.url code.
Only time will tell if QR codes are here to stay, or just a passing fad. With creating and accessing them becoming such a hassle-free process, my bet is that they will be here for the long haul. Now, if we could just get some artists involved to make them prettier to look at, that would be awesome!
Welcome to the world of zooming! By now, many of us have become quite familiar with the Zoom platform as the “new normal” for what had been face-to-face meetings and classes. Through these experiences, you may have had more of those “this could’ve/should’ve been handled in an email” meetings, or had classes with a range of engagement.
Over the past 2 1/2 semesters, with 6 classes during that time via Zoom, both at the graduate and undergraduate level, with class size ranging from 4 to 20, a key challenge that has come up across these classes is how to keep students engaged during the class time which can range from 1 to 4 or more hours at a time. Today we will share some teaching ideas for breakout rooms:
Brilliant Breakout Rooms: Breakout rooms (ideally) offer the possibility for partner or small group work and a chance for everyone’s voice to be heard and increasing engagement. Ideally. In reality, there is little to no control as to what happens in the breakout room. An instructor I was supervising reported yesterday that she had 7 breakout rooms, and as she jumped from room to room, almost all participants had their videos and the mics off. Prior to inviting them to the rooms, she had a slide that outline the instructions, and she told them to take a picture of their slide so they would remember the task. She also alerted them that she would be joining them in the rooms. About a minute in, she sent a reminder to all groups as to what they should be doing. Then she sent a message that she would shortly be joining. All of these are great ideas for increasing engagement, but repeatedly, the students were not engaging. Each time she entered a room, she had to repeat the instructions. Not quite the outcome she was hoping to have. What else could she do?
Provide material beforehand. If lengthy (paragraph or more) material is needed, such as a paragraph describing a case study or scenario, provide that information prior to class AND in class. For those who did not access/read the material beforehand, you can (a) remind them to do so at the beginning of class and during a break, (b) put a link to the needed material in the chat box, (c) provide the material on either a slide or document during the chat and suggest they take a picture or screenshot of it.
Simplify instructions. The more complicated or lengthy the instructions, the less likely the group will be able to accomplish the task. Follow the KISS acronym (keep it simple/short sweety). In a recent class, I had very, very brief scenarios for 3 groups, and decided to keep the instructions the same across groups.
Set a time limit. Determining how long to allow for breakout room activity can be challenging. The maximum amount of time that I’ve found helpful is ten minutes.
Specify expectations for when they return. Another way to increase the likelihood participants will stay on task during breakout rooms is to let them know how what they will be doing in breakout rooms will be used when they get back. Saying “we’ll discuss what you’ve come up with” is too vague, and might result in their hoping someone else will carry that discussion and/or that they can jump in off of what someone else says. The slide below shows a table that I showed the students before dividing them into pairs (I have 11 in this class) so they would know what was expected when they came back. The assignment was to look. The partners were to look through 2 articles that were reading assignments on the history of counseling and school psychology, and identify what they felt were the top 5 developments for both fields during their assigned period of time. The expectation was that they would come back and paste their top fives into the table. By having this visual in front of them before they left for the breakout rooms guaranteed they would be on task.
Require reporting. Here’s an example of what the partners provided when they came back. I did have them also briefly summarize what stood out to them. In 5 words or less, how would you characterize your period for CP & SP? I gave advance instructions to listen for themes across the decades. After each group had gone I asked about general observations from what we had shared. I also asked what they thought was missing from the table, and the next decade would bring.
Vary the activities. As engaging as the activity above was, if it was the only type of breakout group activity I used each time, the approach would get tired.
Vary the number of people in the groups. Some activities work better with partners, some with a slightly larger group.
Shake it up. Start by assigning people to rooms. After a few minutes, either ask certain members to move to another room, or manually move people to different rooms. This can be useful when you are wanting people to hear different perspectives on a given topic.
Double the size, double the fun. Along the same lines of shake it up, if you start with partners on a specific topic, when the time is up, double the breakout room size by combining rooms. It should be clear what the new goal is. For example, it could be for each group to share what they discussed and to come up with a set # of recommendations.
Show and tell. Invite members to find one item that symbolizes their thoughts about one of the topics being discussed and share. In one class, we asked students to find something that helps them feel more confident with interviewing. Most chose an article of clothing or fixed their hair differently or showed a pair of shoes.
Role play. Often in my face-to-face classes, we’d have an application time when students would role play being a career counselor and client. Zoom breakout rooms is actually ideal for this, as they are much quieter than having 20 people in a classroom doing this at the same time. You could also include an observer to provide feedback.
Summarize key points. When I am covering a heavy topic, such as career theories, I usually have students pair up to summarize their notes to their partner on the key points of the last couple of theories I covered. This helps identify any gaps in their notes. Depending on the group size, partners/groups could be assigned specific theories and tasked with coming back with 3 key points of that theory, or analyzing a given case through the lens of that theory, or coming up with counseling questions that reflect the theory components.
Use other tools. Using a tool such as google docs can allow the whole class while in their breakout rooms to work on a shared document. They can create a brief presentation together that they then can share with the larger group.
Seek feedback. Consider having an anonymous survey or poll, perhaps not after every class and certainly not after every activity, but to see what they enjoyed about the breakout room activities, and if they have suggestions from other classes or their own experience on other types of activities that might be useful.
These are some hints that I’ve found to increase engagement during breakout rooms. What have you found to be helpful for increasing engagement? Hit us up in the comments!
How one thinks about themselves, their options, and how they make decisions is an essential component of effective career decision making, as identified by Cognitive Information Processing. When that thinking becomes negative, or even escalates to dysfunctional, it can color the way the one views their strengths, interests, skills, as well as their career options. It can even impact their decision making process. Imagine telling yourself “I never make good decisions” as you are trying to make a career decision- it’s not going to bode well for the process!
Thus, career practitioners must learn how to help clients identify and alter those thoughts that are prohibiting progress in career decision making.