Piloting Vevox polling tool

Friday, May 3, 2024

The University has obtained a one-year enterprise license to pilot the polling tool Vevox, a simple to use real-time audience engagement platform that can support both academic and non-academic purposes. The results of this pilot, including feedback from testers, will inform the decision to proceed with the tool in an official capacity.

When is this happening?

Vevox will be available for use beginning Friday, May 3, 2024. A training session is scheduled via Zoom for Friday, May 3, 2024, 1:00-2:30 pm ET and will be recorded for those unable to attend. Additional training sessions will be scheduled throughout the Spring term. Join Zoom Meeting for Vevox Training.

What do I need to do?

For a streamlined and enhanced user experience for instructors and participants alike, faculty and staff are encouraged to transition their use of polling tool(s) to Vevox. Note: Vevox will be contacting Waterloo users who have a current, active free or paid subscription to provide a refund (where applicable) and assist with the transition to the University’s enterprise license.

iClicker will remain a centrally supported tool where students pay the licensing fee. iClicker may be a better solution for a course depending on the use case (especially where grading is important).

To get started, visit the Vevox tool guide on the EdTech Hub (links to documentation are at the bottom of the page).

You will be able to log in to Vevox via SSO (Single Sign-On) using your Waterloo username and password. The integration with LEARN will require more testing before being. Although Vevox can have graded questions, we recommend NOT using Vevox for grades at this time (especially for large classes) because the export does not have a unique identifier for each student's results, making uploading to LEARN challenging. Vevox has indicated that having identifiers in the export is planned for release in June.

About this initiative

Use of polling tools enable real-time interaction, testing, and engagement with question and answers and audience feedback in the form of multiple-choice questions, word clouds, short answer questions, gamification, etc. Several different polling tolls have been adopted and used, in an ad hoc fashion, by faculty and staff to enhance engagement with class, workshop, webinar, and meeting attendees. The lack of central coordination has introduced many issues and/or risks, including:

  • Student frustration with additional subscription costs and multiple tools with similar functionality.
  • Separate login credentials for each tool.
  • Missing or incomplete tool accessibility, privacy, and/or security assessments, capabilities, and/or adherence.
  • An increase in licensing costs for the University.
  • Limitations for help, support, and/or training.

In response to these issues and/or risks, a review of digital polling tools was launched with the participation of 77 faculty and staff.

The recommendation to move forward with a central license for Vevox was made after careful evaluation of polling tools iClicker, Kahoot, Mathmatize, Mentimeter, Piazza, Poll Everywhere, Slido, Top Hat, Vevox, and WooClap.

Central coordination of a polling tool is expected to address identified risks, result in savings to the University over the long term, and align teaching and learning efforts with the vision and objectives of the University’s digital learning strategy. Additional benefits include robust training and support, account management and reporting, integration with LEARN, and single sign-on (SSO).

Questions or concerns?

You are invited to send questions or concerns about this initiative to Pam Fluttert, Director, Instructional Technologies and Media Services (ITMS), Information Systems & Technology (IST).