App Smackdown! A Battle Royale of Education Technology
Concurrent Session 6
This quick-fire showcase will feature four lightweight apps to foster active, experiential online learning via a battle royale style competition! Four challengers from The University of Arizona will present a lightning demo each, followed by audience voting on who should be crowned the winner of this no-holds-barred app smackdown.
Implementing innovative uses of technology that foster active, student-centered learning can prove a challenge, particularly those that support differentiated learning in the online environment. In this quick-fire, hands-on app showcase, four members of The University of Arizona’s Office of Digital Learning will spotlight several emerging technologies available at the UA for use in the digital learning environment. In a head-to-head competition, they will share strategies and effective practices for use by both students and educators, and highlight innovative approaches to incorporating the tools into the classroom.
This session features a (mostly) friendly, competition style format that pits these apps and their supporters against one another in an effort to win over the hearts and minds of the participants. Participants will review each tool broadly in a lightning-style presentation, focusing on ease of use and wide applicability of the tool in a variety of teaching and learning contexts. At the end of the session, they will play the role of judge and jury, casting a vote for the the most compelling tool, thereby selecting the next Smackdown Battle Royale Champion!
This session will benefit practitioners from all backgrounds and skill levels, particularly those seeking ways to foster learner autonomy over the educational process. It will be structured as an "app smackdown" where participants will be encouraged to join in on the discussion and share feedback through a live backchannel. Participants will leave with a bevy of effective practices that they might implement in their own teaching and learning or in supporting their colleagues in their efforts to support student engagement. Participants will also gain experience with rapid-fire professional development techniques to drive the experimentation and implementation of new education technology tools. The Office of Digital Learning has held on-campus app smackdowns for the past three years, and previous battles have included tools that have gone on to be implemented across the institution, to include VoiceThread, Adobe Spark, and Playposit. The presenters seek to model the app smackdown format as a powerful faculty and staff development tool, and one that creates excitement and structure around the marketing and adoption phases of technology pilots at institutions.