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Formative Assessment Tool: Plickers

Collecting formative assessment data instantly with minimal technology use


Teachers commonly use Plickers, a free real-time formative assessment tool, to pre-assess at the beginning of content blocks. This tool does not require student use of technology for data collection. It allows all students to publicly answer a question using their personal QR code sheet, that can only be read by a scanner, so all students can answer simultaneously.

Student Does

  • Follows teacher prompts and answers the question by holding up a “Plicker card” with a QR code that corresponds to a multiple choice answer.

Teacher Does

  • Explains the topic of the pre-assessment to students.
  • Displays the question and answer options via projector for students, while also reading each outloud.

  • Requests that students hold up their “Plicker card” with the QR code that corresponds to their answer.

  • Scans the students’ cards with their iPhone using the Plicker App.

  • Checks the Plicker data display to make sure every student has submitted a response.

Technology Does

  • Quickly reads student answers and populates them in a data set so teachers can immediately see which students have answered and the percent correct for the class.
  • Provides private data to the teacher that illustrates which students got specific questions right and wrong, allowing the teacher to modify student Learner Pathways as needed.