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Brandon Tenn

Has taught for 11 years and has been an iClicker customer since 2016.


Students engaged in Brandon Tenn's active learning classroom since started using iClicker.

Products Used

Instructor Software: iClicker Cloud
Student Devices Allowed: iClicker Reef

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Spreading the Joy:
How Brandon Tenn helps students appreciate the beauty and applicability of chemistry and math.

We asked Professor Tenn a few questions about why, what, and how he does what he does for his students on a daily basis. Here is what he had to say:

What is the most fulfilling aspect of teaching for you?

"The most fulfilling aspect of teaching is helping students overcome the 'ugh, I hate this class' attitude and replacing it with 'this class isn't so bad.' It's even more fulfilling when students take it a step further and realize that they can succeed in subjects they previously thought were impossible."

What drew you to seek a student engagement solution in your course?

"My students typically have good attendance in most classes, however, early on in my teaching career, I noticed that something was missing. Students would attend class but had trouble retaining information and understanding basic concepts. It was also very difficult for me to get students to participate in discussions. I needed a tool that would allow me to effectively communicate with students and encourage participation and problem solving."

Tools used in Brandon Tenn's active learning classroom.

Instructor Software

For his instructor software, Brandon Tenn uses iClicker Cloud, iClicker's cloud-based application, for tracking student engagement and grades. iClicker Cloud allows instructors to track attendance using GPS technology, ask target (heat map) questions, administer quizzes, and analyze student performance using a web browser. Students can participate using mobile devices, laptops, and iClicker remotes.

Student Response Option

Brandon Tenn's students use iClicker Reef, iClicker's mobile application, on their own laptops and mobile devices to engage in the classroom. iClicker Reef gives students access to polling and study tools on devices they already own and is a cheaper alternative to traditional remotes.

Compare Instructor & Student Product Options

How have students responded to the use of iClicker, what is the biggest challenge iClicker solves for you, and were there any unexpected results from the use of iClicker in your course?

"Students have responded very positively towards the use of iClicker in my classes. iClicker solved the problem of not knowing where students need help and what their biggest misunderstandings are. I knew that iClicker would allow me to formatively assess classes throughout each session, but initially, I did not know that this tool could be used to communicate back and forth between myself and students. iClicker opened up a line of communication that completely changed the dynamics of my classes."

Have you used or considered other student response systems? If so, what made you decide to select iClicker over other options?

"I previously used Polleverywhere.com and Socrative. I decided to try iClicker once I found out that iClicker was the easiest to setup and that it automatically records attendance and awards points for participation and correct answers. Students really appreciate how iClicker saves each polling session in their accounts."

WEBINAR: Teaching Chemistry in the 21st Century

Studies show that engaging students through activities, discussion and collaboration is more effective than traditional lecturing. In this webinar, Brandon Tenn, PhD, Professor of Chemistry and Math at Merced College shares key strategies, ideas and best practices as they relate to the modern Chemistry classroom!

What are some key concepts in the course you teach that are more easily mastered as a result of iClicker-based activities?

"Every topic I teach is more easily mastered because of iClicker. However, one of the topics that I really enjoy using iClicker for are chemical nomenclature in my Introductory Chemistry class. I really like using iClicker for numeric problems like unit conversions and stoichiometry. In my statistics course, iClicker allows me to collect data for studies and share student responses with the entire class."

How does iClicker save you time?

"iClicker allows me to take attendance instantly as well as conduct polls, questions, and send students information (solutions to problems, websites, etc). I don't have to rely on the 1-2 vocal students to gauge the pulse of the class. I now know how almost every student is doing or what topics they each are having difficulty with. I periodically give graded quizzes via iClicker. It reduces prep and grading time for those activities."

What is your favorite iClicker feature?

"Using short answer to collect questions from students during class."

  • Created by educators, for educators

    iClicker was developed by educators to solve specific learning challenges. We asked our founders from the University of Illinois how iClicker got its start, and the problems it continues to solve.

  • Capture student attendance

    Using a variety of geolocation-based technologies, iClicker Cloud quickly and reliably tells you who is attending class, and who isn’t.

  • Powered by why

    We believe in giving all students a voice and that all classrooms should feel small. This is one piece of a larger vision for engaged, active learning that drives us here at iClicker. What's your why... and how can we help you attain it?