UNF Center for Instruction and Research Technology

Cirt Blog Post

A Beginner’s Guide to Top Hat

Online Learning Support

UNF is Transitioning to Top Hat

In case you haven’t heard, the University has identified Top Hat as its new student response system. Top Hat will become the standard response system effective Summer 2023 and support for Turning Point will end. (Click here to learn more)

What This Means for You

By identifying Top Hat as a solution for classroom polling, CIRT will be able to provide you with better support, more straightforward answers, and extended documentation. We’ve already created a Support Article covering the basics of setting up your account. Plus, we’ve been working with Top Hat representatives to make the transition as easy as possible by scheduling a series of upcoming workshops catering to both advanced users and beginners. In addition to vendor-led workshops, our support agents and instructional designers are working on new best practices articles and blog posts (like this one), as well as even more synchronous and asynchronous trainings.

Top Hat also has a comprehensive support center with a ton of excellent information for educators and students. Here you will find a wide selection of articles ranging from tips on how to update your syllabus, how to log attendance, and how to use polling with a variety of different question types.  

Furthermore, if you are a user of another student response system (such as Echo360/TurningPoint, Socrative, Kahoot, or PollEverywhere), we can help to make the transition easy. CIRT has partnered with Top Hat instructional designers, who can help you to migrate your current course material into Top Hat. Top Hat’s onboarding and migration team is available to anyone using any online platform outside of Top Hat. As long as questions or presentations can be exported into a copy/paste format, they can be imported into Top Hat. Turnaround time is typically two weeks. If you want to use this service, please indicate so on this participation form.

Getting Started

First things first, if you haven’t already read our Knowledge Base Article on Top Hat, we recommend that you do so. This article covers common use cases for this new platform and provides information on Top Hat’s many different offerings. 

It Isn't All About Polling

Top Hat has an extensive feature set that also includes…

Interactive Presentations

Incorporate video, images or good old fashioned plain text to pique curiosity and drive the conversation.

Dynamic Textbooks

Top Hat textbooks can motivate students with multimedia, interactive diagrams, and dynamic assessments.

Attendance Tracking

Save time taking attendance so you can focus on what you do best — engaging your students.

Real Time Analytics

Data is a helpful tool that faculty can use to inform, engage, and create unique opportunities for students. Top Hat’s analytics helps instructors make connections that lead to insights and assist in critical skill development. 

sample weekly top hat activity report

Top Hat’s Weekly Course Report uses aggregated data to identify top (and bottom) performers. The report, which can delivered directly to your inbox, indicates correctness scores per question and flags low-performing students, inviting you to email them to offer additional support.

Need Support?

Top Hat’s feature set goes beyond even what is listed above. If you are interested in learning more, we recommend visiting Top Hat Guides to access collections of ebooks, case studies, and course templates that can help you to navigate the depths of this new software.

Furthermore, UNF faculty who need additional help with Top Hat can reach out to the Online Learning Support team at CIRT. Contact us via email at cirtlab@unf.edu or phone (904-620-3927).

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