Overview: Learning Catalytics
Updated 31 Jan 2023
Learning Catalytics can be used with all textbooks in all Mastering disciplines. Questions are available for many disciplines, both from Pearson and from the wider academic community. You can also add your own questions in a number of engaging formats.
Videos about delivering questions
Videos about scores
Summary of features
The links available in the expandable sections below open Learning Catalytics Instructor Help, where more details are available about using Learning Catalytics with your Mastering course.
In class—both classroom-based and online classes—Learning Catalytics encourages student engagement and provides real-time insight into misconceptions. On your instructor console, you see student responses tabulated or displayed graphically as students submit them, and you can enable an "I don't understand" feature that students can use to let you know whenever they are confused.
Also in class, quizzes and interactive worksheets can be delivered using Learning Catalytics rich question formats in Self-Paced or Self-Test modules.
Groups for discussing answers support peer-to-peer learning, where students can articulate their thinking and improve their conceptual understanding. Automatic grouping is available for Instructor-Led Synchronous and Automated Synchronous sessions, and permanent teams or student-formed temporary teams can be used in Team-Based sessions.
In class: Instructor-Led Synchronous
In class: Self-Paced and Self-Test
Students in completely asynchronous online courses can participate in a Learning Catalytics session simultaneously with other students who are taking the same course.
Outside of class, asynchronously assigned questions let students work independently. Students can also return to older sessions to review Learning Catalytics questions.
Students bring their own devices (not a separate clicker that limits the nature of question types and interactions), so you are able to deliver a wide variety of question formats that students respond to by selecting a region of an image, dragging a pointer to indicate direction of movement, sketching on their screen, and even uploading an image they have created—in addition to typical multiple-choice, numerical, algebraic, textual, matching, and ranking questions.
For the modules you deliver, you can select questions from both Pearson and the wider academic community. You can also create your own questions and share them with your colleagues. Selection is easy using filters by source, contributor, topic, textbook, and question format.
Add a Learning Catalytics module
Find Learning Catalytics questions
Performance measurements are captured at both the class and student levels for you to review at any time in Learning Catalytics. If you award points for Learning Catalytics questions, you can transfer scores automatically from the Learning Catalytics Gradebook to the Mastering Gradebook, where they appear in columns with a blue heading.
These scores always belong to the Learning Catalytics category in Mastering, which means you can filter the Mastering Gradebook to show only Learning Catalytics scores.
Because of Gradebook implications, you might consider whether to create multiple Mastering courses or sections within one course.
Review a student's performance
View, edit, and transfer Learning Catalytics scores (This topic also includes notes about editing Learning Catalytics scores and exempting students from a Learning Catalytics session.)
Before you begin
The Planning Toolkit helps you plan, implement, and evaluate Learning Catalytics for use with your course.
You'll want to consider connectivity requirements and student-access purchases before deciding to use Learning Catalytics with your course.
- Capacity for all students to be online simultaneously via Wi-Fi
or cell providers(check with your IT department)
Student Web-enabled devices and account access:
Smartphone, tablet, or laptopfor each student (might incur standard data charges if used on a phone)
- Learning Catalytics access, included free with purchase of Mastering with a Pearson eTextbook.
Note: For students who don’t have a device, you can supply a printed PDF version of the module questions. In the list of modules for a Learning Catalytics course, click in the row for the module, and then select Create PDF.
You can explore features, experiment with setup options, and test your delivery (including mobile delivery) before you decide to make Learning Catalytics available to students.
Students don't see the Learning Catalytics option (top right) on their Mastering Course Home until after you decide to use Learning Catalytics and alert them to confirm or purchase access.
Anything you set up as you explore Learning Catalytics can be used or discarded. Students don't see anything in Learning Catalytics until they join a session.
To start exploring:
- Select Learning Catalytics from your Mastering Course Home.
- In Step 1, select Preview & Setup.
In Learning Catalytics, notice that a course has been created automatically with the same name as your Mastering course title.
- After you have crossed over from Mastering to Learning Catalytics once, you have the option of opening Learning Catalytics directly from LearningCatalytics.com. There you can supply your Mastering username and password to access all of your courses, modules, questions, seat maps, and performance measurements.
- You can also create a copy of a Learning Catalytics course, but you cannot associate the copy with a Mastering course. The only way to associate Learning Catalytics with a Mastering course is to complete steps 1 and 2 above. Then when you log in to LearningCatalytics.com you can copy Learning Catalytics modules between courses.
- If you copy a Mastering course, all of the Learning Catalytics modules in the original course are available to be used with the new course. Complete steps 1 and 2 above, and see that all the modules are in the new Learning Catalytics course that is created automatically and associated with the new Mastering course. No old student data is copied forward.
- In Learning Catalytics you can watch the How Do I? videos linked from the Training page. Further information about features, logistics, and pedagogical issues is available from the Implementation Guide, also accessed from that page.
Section instructors can help with all the tasks you can complete in Learning Catalytics, including copying courses and modules, creating new questions, editing the student notification message and inviting students, delivering in-class sessions, starting and stopping asynchronous sessions, responding to student questions, working in the Learning Catalytics Gradebook, and so on.
- From Mastering:
You can give access to your Learning Catalytics course to colleagues and TAs that become Mastering section instructors and have the Learning Catalytics privilege. Section instructors must open Learning Catalytics by clicking the link in Mastering. If they open Learning Catalytics directly, they see only the student view.
Section instructors who don't have the Learning Catalytics privilege are treated as students and see only the student view of Learning Catalytics in both Mastering and Learning Catalytics.
- From Learning Catalytics: If you want to share a Learning Catalytics course with colleagues, without adding them as section instructors in your Mastering course, you can send them a copy from Learning Catalytics. The copy includes all modules in the course, but contains no student data.
Any change a colleague makes in the copy has no effect on your course, and vice versa. The copy is not and cannot be associated with a Mastering course, but colleagues can copy modules from the copied course into their own Mastering-associated Learning Catalytics courses. How to send a copy of a Learning Catalytics course to colleagues
Get your students ready
If you decide to use Learning Catalytics with your Mastering course, you enable students to access your associated Learning Catalytics course, and notify students to confirm or purchase access.
After you make the In-Class Learning feature available to your students, they must click the Learning Catalytics link to confirm, or be prompted to purchase, access to Learning Catalytics.
Distributing the Get Started handout ensures that students have the information they need to access Learning Catalytics before you deliver your first session.
For more information on the student experience with Learning Catalytics, see Student Help for Learning Catalytics
Students using a smartphone or small tablet go to learningcatalytics.com and sign in with the Pearson username and password they used to enroll in your Mastering course. When prompted, they supply the session ID (the number in parentheses at the top of the student screen).
On a laptop or larger tablet, students can also sign in to your Mastering course and click Join Session (top right) from the Course Home.
When students have joined the session, they are prompted to identify the seat they occupy (if you have associated the course with a seat map), and then they see either the "Please wait" message or your first question, if you have delivered one.
To see how joining and participating in a session is described for students, see Student Help for Learning Catalytics.