Active Learning Tools

There are different types of tools instructors can use to support active learning. Below are some examples.

Assessment & peer review

Eli Review: Peer review platform licensed by MSU, reviews written work, images, spreadsheets, and more.

Google Forms: Web-based student responses, free unlimited polls/ responses, sharing via URL or embedding, and responses sent to Google spreadsheet. (NOT part of MSU Google for Education app suite.)

Jeopardy Labs: Online Jeopardy-style game to engage students.

Quizlet: Online flash cards for quizzing and games.

Turnitin: A cloud-based learning environment licensed by MSU for development and assessment of writing skills.

Content management

Google Drive through MSU Google for Education: Multiple people can edit, share documents online or download copies, unlimited storage. (MSU Google for Education tied to your MSU NetID and password offers better terms of service.)

Wikispaces: Web page multiple people can edit. Free 2GB educational account with unlimited pages and users.

WordPress: Way to create website or blog, customizable with intuitive commenting system, free with ads.

Media creation & storage

Adobe Presenter: PowerPoint plugin, PC only, editing, HTML, and Flash. Free to MSU instructors.

Animoto: Tool for creating videos and presentations. Free version for educators.

Audacity: Open source, cross-platform software for recording and editing sounds.

Camtasia: Screen recording software for Mac & PCs with various presentation editing capabilities, captioning, and export HTML packages. (Can purchase from MSU Computer Store or TechSmith.)

Canva: Easy-to-use online graphic design application.

Flickr: Web-based video and photo sharing, 1TB free storage, share via URL or embedding.

MSU Kaltura MediaSpace: Video repository and content delivery network, video and screencast creation, D2L integration, HTML5, MP4. Free MSU students, faculty, and staff.

PowToon: Free tool to create animated presentations.

Prezi: Web-based, non-linear presentation software, 500MB educational account, share via URL, embedding, or downloading Flash file.

Rich Internet Applications: Web-based tools that are informed by language acquisition research, and engage language learners in active learning. (Managed by the Center for Language Education And Research at Michigan State University.)

VoiceThread: Cloud-based media aggregator that allows focused conversations and reflection around a specific topic.

Social engagement

Padlet: An easy way to brainstorm, collaborate, or present on a common visual bulletin board.

Piazza at MSU: Web-based, Q&A forum, set up for higher education and course management, has D2L integration.

Storify: Free, web-based social media curation to build stories and share via URL embedding.

TEDEd: Tool to build a lesson around any TED-Ed Original, TED Talk, or YouTube video.

ThingLink: Tool to create interactive and informational hotspots on a picture. Can sign up for a teacher account.

Tumblr: Blogging platform to post text, photos, quotes, links, music, and videos from browser, phone, desktop, or email.

Twitter: Web-based social media, micro-blogging platform. Course hashtag can be created and collated via Twitterfall.

Zaption: Tool to turn online videos into interactive learning experiences.

Student response & polling

GoSoapBox: Web-based clicker tool used to keep student engaged and gain real-time insights.

iClickers: Remote devices that can be used in any classroom to promote active student engagement.

Poll Everywhere: Web-based student response application, free unlimited polls with up to 40 responses, share via URL embedding or download for PowerPoint or Prezi.

Socrative: Free online student response application for real time questions and polls.

Top Hat: Software can be used on laptops and mobile devices to increase student engagement.