Personal Response Systems

Many hands raised.What Are Personal Response Systems (Clickers)?

Personal Response Systems (PRS) are a combination of hardware and software used in teaching and learning in order to identify participant understanding or needs and help instructors make timely instructional choices. This is accomplished through the following process:

  • An instructor proposes a multiple choice question.
  • Students respond through handheld devices such as clickers, cell phones, tablets, or computers.
  • Software available to the instructor collects the responses and displays them as a bar or pie chart for easy at a glance consumption.


MCC does not have an officially supported PRS. There are free PRSs available many of which do not require proprietary hardware (ie. students may use their own cell phone.) Contact the CTL about investigating web-based PRSs to fit your needs and address any accessibility concerns.


Instructional Delivery

Special consideration must be made for students with disabilities when utilizing PRSs. Some best practices include:

  • When a question is proposed, explicitly state the available response options.
  • Verbally describe the results of the poll if outcomes are shared with the entire audience.


While choosing a PRS that supports individuals using their own devices (cell phone, tablet, or computer) is ideal, if proprietary hardware must be used be sure to consider the following:

  • If all students are required to purchase a proprietary clicker, inform students that accessible versions are available from the hardware manufacturers. The MCC Bookstore currently does not stock any PRS, but will order an accessible or standard version for students when requested.
  • If a PRS is provided for students, be sure to include an accessible version of the hardware in the kit or ensure interpreters are available.