Kahooting your way to better grades! Active/competitive review sessions help student learning

Submitted by Erica Wager on

For this CATS I explored how a Kahoot could help students be successful in studying for exams. I gave a traditional review session for Exam 2 (give students terms and tell them to define the terms and give examples for each of the terms in groups), and then for Exam 3 I did a Kahoot review session. Kahoot is an online polling tool where students can compete with one another to answer review questions and get to follow along with their progress as they go through the review session. For Exam 2, where I used a traditional review session, my students’ average was 78.12% and for Exam 3, where I used the Kahoot, my students’ average was 82.20%. While this is only approaching a marginally significant difference in test score (p=.15) I was very pleased with the qualitative feedback I received from students following the Kahoot. Two students gave me written feedback and many gave me verbal feedback that they really enjoyed the Kahoot and felt that it helped their retention of the material. I have used Kahoots for the rest of my exams in this course and plan to make more Kahoot’s for other classes in the future!

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Average: 4.8 (5 votes)


Becky Baranowski Fri, 04/29/2016 - 3:16pm

I have observed instructors using polling systems with students, and I have yet to try them.  Is Kahoot equation friendly?  Some of these polling systems can't incorporate math equations, so I don't use them.  I'd love to learn more about this.  

Erica Wager Fri, 04/29/2016 - 3:21pm

Thank you for the feedback! I am not sure if Kahoot lets you do equations, I included the link in the CATS if you want to check it out! I have only done multiple choice style questions in my reviews, so you could probably cut and paste equations in (to a certain extent, I know some of my stats equations might be difficult to incorperate). Hope that helps!

Peter Turner Fri, 04/29/2016 - 3:34pm

I also have not used Kahoot. But I love your application of it as a test preparation tool. Cecilia R. also found Kahoot as a valuable teaching strategy. Is it possible to integrate Kahoot into one's Ppt presentation to check for understanding? Well done CATS, by the way!

Roselyn Turner Fri, 04/29/2016 - 3:35pm

For instructors who give exams, I think it is great that you accommodate for test prep during class time!  It gives you the opportunity to check for understanding and to offer formative feedback prior to the "big test day."  I am glad you found a polling system that is expedient and effective!

Erica Wager Fri, 04/29/2016 - 3:42pm

Thank you! I'm not sure if you are able to add the poll to a powerpoint but that would make it even easier to use! Yes, I think giving students an idea of what my quesitons will looks like helps lower test anxiety and I often pull questions from the kahoot and put them in the exam (or I match the content in some way). 

Norma Jimenez Hernandez Fri, 04/29/2016 - 8:48pm

This sounds great, Erica!  This is similar to the jeopardy game, but I like the individual accountability that Kahoot can provide.  What might be a good idea, too, is to have the students in one class come up with the Kahoot questions and have the other class take it and vice-versa.  

Olga Tsoudis Tue, 08/23/2016 - 9:28pm

Erica, What a creative tool to use to help your students increase their test scores. I enjoyed using it at the Day of Learning and hope to use it in my class this semester. Thanks for encouraging us! Olga

Patricia Cardenas-Adame Mon, 09/19/2016 - 4:07pm

Ercia, I am interested in using this tool as well and hope to build a Kahoot in the future for my ENG class. I may come visit for a one-to-one tutorial :)

Erica Wager Mon, 09/19/2016 - 4:30pm

It's very user friendly and fun to engage students, I'd be happy to help you set one up! 

Christopher Black Wed, 09/21/2016 - 8:51am

Several of the SWSC programs use Kahoots.  Last week I tried for the first time using the public published Kahoots and found it very useful.  - Chris

Eric Eckert Fri, 10/07/2016 - 1:56pm

I have been using Kahoot for every lecture I give in my CSC120 (Digital Design Fundamentals) class. Because the students expect it, they pay more attention during class. Also, it helps me tremendously because I get instant feedback on which concepts 'connected' and those thata we need to go over again. I literally pause the Kahoot and reexplain a topic if I find too many students missing a question. Also, the music makes it fun. I did it once with my machine muted and the class rebelled; they wanted the soundtrack. I LOVE Kahoot!

Erica Wager Thu, 01/12/2017 - 12:42pm

In reply to by Eric Eckert

I agree that it's one of the BEST ways to immediately assess comprehension of a subject. I do the exact same thing with pausing it to re-explain something, and it's great to see them all really listening and taking notes because they know they just missed it. I love the soundtrack too!