Instructor in the Curriculum and Instruction Department of the Education program at Western Illinois University

Instructor in the Curriculum and Instruction Department of the Education program at Western Illinois University

Using Coach’s Eye in Teacher Assessment and Identification

by: Will Verchereau

Western Illinois University’s College of Education and Human Services is using Coach’s Eye outside the box. The app is obviously a phenomenal tool for analyzing sports performance, but how can it help beyond the sidelines?

Pam Campbell, an instructor in the Curriculum and Instruction Department of the Education program at Western Illinois University has found a great way to integrate Coach’s Eye into her curriculum. Pam took a few minutes of her time to share her insights with us:

Coach’s Eye: What was the need that drove you to seek products like Coach’s Eye?

Campbell: I was looking for ways to update my classroom observation course, in which students learning to be future teachers watch recordings of classrooms and assess the learning environment.  Prior to Coach’s Eye, my students were watching outdated videos of elementary classrooms and taking notes on specific areas of focus. However, I wanted to get my WIU students into live/current classrooms where they could record their own video footage and then edit their footage and annotate specific areas of focus. Coach’s eye seemed like a great way to incorporate our University’s newly purchased iPad cart into the classroom, and update my course content at the same time.

Coach’s Eye: What problems were you facing with previous solutions (or lack of solutions)?

Campbell: The classroom videos we had were outdated and students were not responding as well to the video observations as planned. I wanted a solution where students were forced to create and submit original work instead of regurgitating assignments from previous semesters.

Additionally, the software we used prior to Coach’s Eye was installed in a computer lab, which required the entire class to relocate and limited our time to work.  This software required greater knowledge of video editing and was limited to text-only input. Coach’s Eye gives us more flexibility with the capabilities of recording audio feedback, drawing on screen, labeling and coding differentiated details with color.

Coach’s Eye: What differences have you noticed since using Coach’s Eye? Any data that can be shared?

Campbell: So far, I have used Coach’s Eye two times in each class, for a total of four sessions.  I wasn’t sure how receptive the students would be to learning with Coach’s Eye, so we started at the very beginning by walking through the app’s features.

I was surprised by how much more comfortable students were with Coach’s Eye after their initial exposure to the app.  My students remembered how to use Coach’s Eye from their previous session and were very fluent when it came time to mark and annotate the video.

Additionally, students are able to turn in their findings smoothly. My students are able to save their work in Coach’s Eye to the iPad camera roll, and our technology staff can automatically download all projects and transmit them to my computer via the network.  This saves a lot of time for my students and me.

Coach’s Eye: How have staff/students responded to the app?

Campbell: Other staff members visited my class session and learned how to use Coach’s Eye along with my WIU students.  The technology department here at WIU has been wonderful to assist, mentor and tutor in every way possible so that I could take the risk of using this app and technology I was not immediately comfortable using.

Coach’s Eye: What are your goals for using the app moving forward?

Campbell: Currently, I am providing my students with video footage from media WIU owns. In the future I would like my students to take advantage of relationships WIU has with local schools. That way, students can take iPads into live classrooms as they gain firsthand classroom experience and record their own video footage to be used with Coach’s Eye. Additionally, I would be interested in finding stock classroom footage that could be loaded into Coach’s Eye and used for such assessment.

Coach’s Eye: Are there additional ways you see staff/students using the app in the future?

Campbell: I teach a field experience class in which students teach in elementary classrooms for 12 weeks.  One requirement for this course is to videotape their teaching and reflect on the video.  I would like to teach those students how to use Coach’s Eye so they can reflect on their own teaching with the tools the app provides.

The Coach’s Eye team would like to extend a big thank you to Pam Campbell and Western Illinois University for their support!

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