Using Audience Response Keypads to Augment the Facilitation of Small Group Dialogue

This article provides a detailed analysis of using audience response keypads to create dialogue in small group settings.

"Audience response systems (ARS) offer significant advantages to dialogue facilitators of small to medium size groups. These devices, which are gaining increasing use within K-17 classrooms, allow dialogue focused meetings to become more engaging, inclusive, and democratic. Dialogue facilitators can use this capability in different ways at various phases of the flow of a dialogue process. By instantly displaying a graphical display of individuals’ responses to multiple-choice questions, participants become aware of the diversity of opinions, experiences, and perspectives in the room. The displayed results create a shared and somewhat objective picture of the diversity of the group mind that is less subject to interpretation than a summary created by a participant or facilitator. This accelerates productively the purpose of group dialogue, which is grappling with the causes and implications of the internal diversity in the perspectives of the participants. ARS allow each person to know their opinion counts equally and productively shift the attention of every participant to the group’s collective mind." (Campt & Freeman, 2009)


  • Literature Review
  • Participants, Dialogue Meta-structures, and Keypad Questions
  • How Keypads Assist Facilitators within each Dialogue Phase
  • Some Other Group Management Issues Regarding Keypads


Campt, D., & Freeman, M. (2009). Talk through the hand: Using audience response keypads to augment the facilitation of small group dialogue. The International Journal of Public Participation,3(1), 80-107. Retrieved from

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