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Teaching & Learning expands availability of UNC Check-in app

ITS Teaching & Learning is expanding the UNC Check-In app to more classrooms and courses across campus.

Viji Sathy
Viji Sathy

The app, a collaboration with Teaching Associate Professor Viji Sathy of the Department of Psychology and Neuroscience, began operating in Spring 2018 with one of Sathy’s classes in Coker 201.

The School of Medicine later adopted the technology for first- and second-year students in August. By the Fall 2018 semester, Teaching & Learning installed another Bluetooth beacon in Bingham 103 for another of Sathy’s classes and any other professor teaching in that classroom. The School of Public Health also began using the check-in technology for some of its classes in Spring 2019.

Benefits students and instructors

Not only does the app hold students accountable for attending lectures, but it also helps instructors monitor their students’ wellness.

“When I contact students about missing [class], they’ve been surprised that I’d do so given the size our class,” Sathy said. “They are genuinely touched that the instructor would reach out to them individually to check on them.”

Future enhancements anticipated

Jeremiah Joyner
Jeremiah Joyner

Sathy and the Teaching & Learning team have several changes in the works on the user interfaces as well as some additional features they would like to incorporate in the future.

“I suspect the tool will evolve as more users join and provide feedback,” said Sathy. “I look forward to continuing to evaluate how the tool is working and ways we can improve upon it.”

Moving forward with the app, Sathy and Teaching & Learning plan to roll out the technology to all general-purpose classrooms in the Spring 2020 semester. As for the next steps in building the app, Teaching & Learning will further evaluate the check-in tool and think through instructor resources for the app.

Teaching & Learning also wants to identify any issues that students are having with the app, said Jeremiah Joyner, Manager, ITS Teaching & Learning Systems and Services. Teaching & Learning will ensure that Service Desk staff members have the tools they need to troubleshoot users’ issues quickly. Those employees will receive a test site and a test course, Joyner said, so they can become more familiar with the app and thereby better serve users.

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