Omar Wasow, Assistant Professor of Politics, first piloted Ed in his POL90: Statistics for Politics and International Relations course in Spring 2022. His students used Ed for tech support and troubleshooting, and they relied on one another for answers. Wasow found that students who were new to computer programming often lost countless hours to simple syntax errors. But with Ed, they worked collaboratively with their classmates to solve syntactic coding issues by posting live updates. This made Ed an especially powerful tool when students couldn’t make it to office hours or needed help during irregular hours. Wasow saved time answering emails as students began to rely on the forum and one another for help, and he saved even more time by being able to point students to answers he had previously given. Ed’s data analytics showed promise in making grading more efficient too—showing who was active, when, and the total contributions. If the short video clip below of Omar talking about Ed isn’t enough for you, please see his full presentation in the 2022 Hahn Info Session recording.
More faculty will begin piloting Ed in Fall 2022 and Spring 2023 as part of the Hahn Grant Program.
Ed is a class discussion tool with a modern interface that helps increase and track interaction. Like other discussion tools, Ed can help create classroom community, but it also offers additional ways students can interact, giving them more agency over their learning. In addition to traditional typed messages, Ed allows users to post videos, annotations, equations using a visual math editor or LaTeX, and runnable code in multiple programming languages. Users can like and endorse posts so they rise to the top, increasing the effectiveness of the Ed discussion.
Ed permits filtering, sorting, and searching of posts as well as organizing into categories or launching into megathreads devoted to single topics. Instructors can track participation, quickly see which questions remain unanswered, and use that information to offer further explanations and examples or re-teach if needed.
Like most of Pomona’s other technology tools, Ed integrates with the learning management system (LMS), is mobile responsive, and meets accessibility and security standards.