Audience Response Tools
A comparison of different software and applications used for live audience response collection during presentations.
Interactive elements make presentations more engaging, informative, and fun for viewers. Response features, such as polling and quizzing, can help presenters and instructors gather information from their audience. These days, there are plenty of applications that allow the user to create interactive slides for their presentations. In this article, a few options will be detailed and compared. The tools that we will explore today will be almost entirely web-based, work on both Windows/Mac, and offer free accounts (with limitations).
The web conferencing tool Zoom includes built in polling options. This offering is available in meetings and webinars ONLY and is not available as a standalone feature. If your polling needs are only within Zoom meetings, then these built in features are the easiest way to poll an audience. To get started, check out Zoom’s support articles on polling.
Poll Everywhere is the most versatile, popular, and recommended audience response tool. It allows users to create surveys, word clouds, multiple choice questions, and other types of interactive activities. The activities you design in the application can then be used within a presentation to engage viewers. Viewers can quickly connect to the activities via a short URL. Poll Everywhere can integrate directly into PowerPoint and Google Slides to create very powerful and dynamic presentations.
Mentimeter is a fully web-based application for building interactive presentations. It includes many interactive features such as polls, word clouds, Q&As, and quizzes. What sets Mentimeter apart from other offerings is its ability to craft full presentations right in the web app, with no need to use other presentation software, unless desired. Mentimeter wields a modern and sleek interface and offers high quality tutorials and help resources.
Slido is a web application that allows the user to easily create interactive content that can be used in a live presentation. Slido has one of the best interfaces in this list, making it a pleasure to use. You can directly integrate Slido with PowerPoint and Google Slides, making it a breeze to add interactivity to any presentations you already have!
Plickers is an application for polling and engaging students in the classroom. It is targeted at a younger audience, but can be used by anyone. It uses a unique system of printed cards for audience engagement, opposed to most other offerings that require the participants to have their own electronic devices. Plickers could be used with other presentation software, but it’s designed to be more of a standalone activity in the classroom–such as a game.
|Purpose||Interactive slide design||
||Interactive slide design||Gamify student interaction|
|# of participants||25||Unlimited||100||63|
|Post-Activity Reports||Requires subscription||Limited||Requires subscription||Yes|
|Standard Features||Multiple choice, word cloud, QnA and more||Multiple choice, word cloud, Q&A and more||Multiple choice, word cloud, Q&A and more||Multiple choice|
|Additional Features||-||Can create full presentations||-||Audience devices not required|
|PowerPoint (PPT) Integration||
|Paid Subscription Cost (optional)||Starts at $42/month||Starts at $11.99/month||Starts at $12/month||Starts at $8.99/month|