FAQ | Helpdesk

Please feel free to contact our ARSnova-Helpdesk , if your question is not listed in the FAQ-List below. From time to time, we also have to deal with similar requests just like our colleague from the Gutenberg Helpdesk:

What is ARSnova?

ARS stands for Audience Response System (see Wikipedia) and “nova” indicates that ARSnova is different from the other ARSes. The Audience Response System ARSnova opens up new possibilities of interaction between the lecturer and the audience; in the lecture hall, at home and on the go. The feedback and voting platform promotes innovative formats for digital teaching: Inverted Classroom, Just-in-Time Teaching and Peer Instruction.

The online service arsnova.eu is free for all teachers at universities, schools and in the area of further education. ARSnova has been developed by the Technische Hochschule Mittelhessen University of Applied Sciences as an Open Source project. The system can be operated, license free, on your own server. The Society for Technology Transfer TransMIT provides technical support during installation and adjustments.

The mobile web app is far more than just a clicker for the “ask the audience question” à la Günther Jauch (televsion host for the German version of the game show, “Who wants to be a Millionaire”).  ARSnova is a didactic tool: The “Live Assessment” (the learning progress indicator in ARSnova) reflects the effectiveness of the lesson or rather the teaching strategy for learning. Students see their current learning progress in comparison to the learning progress of the group. Learners can also use the system for their own purposes, e.g. for presentation evaluations in seminars or for multimedia flashcards.

The online service arsnova.eu has already heavily been used at more than 40 universities and institutions of higher education from teachers coming from various disciplines, especially in so-called MINT-subjects and in teacher training. Operation and didactic functions were evaluated and optimized in scientific usability and acceptability surveys.

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What do the acronyms ICM, JiTT and PI mean? What is a Clicker?

You can look up everything in Wikipedia; however, this video is more entertaining to watch:

  1. Is the online service arsnova.eu/mobile free of charge?

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Is the online service arsnova.eu/mobile free of charge?

Yes, ARSnova is not commercial.

Furthermore, the software is Open Source.

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Is there an ARSnova app for iOS or Android?

No, due to reasons beyond our capabilities; such as to promptly update two native app implementations (as iOS and Android app) with the independent platform and to upgrade the exuberant main development as a HTML 5 app. You can find a galore of comparisons in the Internet, dealing with the differences of opinion between web and native apps. One example can be seen here: DZone

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Which advantages come with universities having their own access?

With a university´s own access to a local installation of ARSnova, you and your audience can:

  • use ARSnova with your familiar university login (e.g. LDAP, CAS), see the example Uni Halle , which increases accessibility (because it is a familiar procedure) and ensures the availability of ARSnova (because it uses the university’s own server); authentication via access of social networks (Google+, Twitter, Facebook) can be omitted, in case of data protection or  institutional political reasons;
  • use ARSnova in conjunction with the Moodle learning platform  (LMS) of your institution. Which allows you to create an ARSnova session with just one click to your LMS course, thus limiting session access to the course participants; therefore, the 8-digit access code is no longer required.

Tips for saving an ARSnova session: The guest login is only suitable for lecturers for testing purposes of ARSnova, since their session access data will only be available on that specifically used device. If one uses ARSnova in the lecture hall with a different computer, you will not be able to access your saved session.

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Is the ARSnova software Open Source?

Yes, it is registered under the GNU General Public License.

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The entire ARSnova project is documented and summerized by Ohloh: http://www.ohloh.net/p/arsnova

 

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Can I run the Software on my own server?

Yes, if you carry the label “arsnova” in the URL-address, e.g. “arsnova.your-university.com”.

The Martin-Luther University Halle-Wittenberg adheres to this, just to give an example: https://arsnova.uni-halle.de

The Leopold-Franzens-University of Innsbruck also follows this and has created a very nice description of ARSnova:

https://arsnova.uibk.ac.at

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Are further developments and support for ARSnova guaranteed?

Absolutely.

ARSnova is a teaching device which is firmly anchored in the Department of Computer Science at the THM. To date, three Master´s and three Bachelor theses were created from the ARSnova project; more are to follow. In addition, the responsible Project Manager , who has a Doctorate in Computer Science and is a university lecturer, will continue to dedicate himself (10 more years of service) in both roles and give all of his enthusiasm und passion to ARSnova.

You can secure this support system (corporate design, adjustments, installation, maintenance, updates and training), even under the terms of a contract, through TransMIT GmbH.

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Which business model supports ARSnova?

ARSnova is a university Open Source project, and is offered as a Software as a Service (SaaS)  free of charge and free to use: https://arsnova.eu/

If an institution would like to have ARSnova operated on its own server, we can undertake the necessary adaptations such as corporate design and LDAP authentication in the form of a special-order contract. If interested, please contact us via the TransMIT GmbH.

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How do I install ARSnova for in-house operation?

A detailed installation manual can be found at GitHub.

As mentioned before in another section, you must use “ARSnova” in the URL, e.g. “arsnova.meine-uni.de”.

If you would like to buy the installation and maintenance as a service, please contact the Project Manager „Mobile Anwendungen“ der TransMIT GmbH

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How can I contact the Developer?

If you would like to contact the Operator and the Project Manager from ARSnova in order to …

  • allow an ARSnova system to be installed for an in-house operation or
  • to adapt ARSnova to fit your needs

then please refer to the project area „Mobile Applications“ of the Technologietransfer-Gesellschaft TransMIT.

If you would like to contact the Developer of ARSnova in order to …

  • give feedback to ARSnova
  • propose a new feature
  • point out a mistake or flaw

Please call the Help desk at 0641 / 309-2381 or describe your request in the text box below

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Is there an Instruction Manual for ARSnova?

Unnecessary, the software is self-explanatory. This has been confirmed by the users (Feedback of teachers).

However, you will find the instruction manual behind the book icon on the homepage of ARSnova or directly here.

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Which browsers support ARSnova?

ARSnova Mobile operates in the standard browsers of all smartphones and tablets, as well as in all current desktop browsers. In desktop browsers, you need to simulate touch gestures such as touching and wiping by pressing the mouse button, respectively moving the mouse while it´s pressed.

Please make sure that while using ARSnova, the browser setting “private” (Apple Safari in iOS) or “Incognito” (e.g. Google Chrome) is disabled, that JavaScript is activated and that cookies are allowed.

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How many listeners can max. participate?

 In principle, any number!  

But if it is meant, how many can vote (in real time) simultaneously, this is primarily a question of the Wi-Fi infrastructure: A Wi-Fi wireless access point in an ordinary 24-Subnet (“Class C”) can theoretically handle 254 clients at once. But the problem is much more complex: : „Is there a limit to the number of wireless clients per subnet/SSID/VLAN?“

Past experience shows that for auditoriums with only one Wi-Fi wireless access point, 50-70 of participants will be able to vote simultaneously in real time. The other participants may have to wait a few seconds until a wireless connection is free again. Also, please be aware that virtually every student with WhatsApp is going to put a strain on the auditorium´s Wi-Fi.

Tip: If there is good signal strength of the cellular network in the auditorium, ask your listeners to disable the Wi-Fi on their smartphone for the duration of the course. A 3G or even EDGE connection is sufficient for the use of ARSnova. In this case, the maximum number of simultaneous participants is several hundred, provided there is good network coverage.

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Why does the page sometimes appear blank?

If the gray heading panel and baseboard are displayed by ARSnova, but the content (questions, answers, statistics) is missing, then this is due to…

  • either a poor or broken Internet connection
  • Or the JavaScript of your browser has disappeared.

In the first case, it may help to change from the Wi-Fi to the cellular network, or vice versa. In the second case, restarting the webpage (reload) suffices, in order to restore the JavaScript interpreter.

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Is there an English language version of ARSnova?

Yes, if you attach /#en  to the URL: https://arsnova.eu/#en

In accordance with /#de, you will be linked back to the German version: https://arsnova.eu/#de

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It´s easy, use this example:  https://arsnova.eu/mobile/#id/71073692

and you directly access the demo session with the session ID 71 07 36 92 as a guest listener.  You can find this link on the Infopage (i-Icon) of your session and can make a copy of it there.

 

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How can I change the order of the questions?

This is a common problem and we are working on a flexible solution:

  • Sorting questions in chronological order.
  • Sort by drag and drop
  • Sorting questions in alphabetical order
  • random order for flashcards

Presently, the question categories and your own questions will be sorted in alphanumeric order.  So if you want to “force” your questions in a certain order, you have to consecutively number the categories and questions, for example: A, B, C with the questions A01, A02 …, B01, B02 …, C01, C02 …

Please see the demo session on this topic.

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Can I import questions from other systems?

Yes, if the data is available in a specific CSV-format . The import and export of questions is possible on the question management page, see the screenshot.

Nota bene: Currently, only questions in the forms of “multiple choice”, single choice “,” yes / no” and “free text” can be exported or imported. Attached images and points for answer options cannot be taken over. We are working on a complete takeover of all formats with all of the attributes.

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How can I see, what my students are seeing?

There are two ways to view your session in the role of a student.

  1. open ARSnova in a new browser window and login as a student.
  2. Click on the role symbol on the homepage of your session

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What makes ARSnova so special?

There are a number of web-based parallel developments to ARSnova, like PINGO, eduVote, FreeQuizDome and many more. We have highlighted the unique features of ARSnova on the Feature page. Feel free to compare and judge for yourself.

Measure the didactic value of an Audience Response System in the following supportive didactic teaching strategies.

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Which institutions have applied ARSnova to their field of teaching?

Since the online service “https://arsnova.eu/mobile” is free and available without registration, we only know which individual universities utilize ARSnova when for example a department chair or a professor thanks the Developer or the Project Manager for the software by email. A cursory overview, with current usage statistics can be found on the Homepage of the Blog and at Feedback from Teachers

The ARSnova Team currently knows of installations at the following universities :

  • In a joint project with the University of Halle-Wittenberg, ARSnova was made available with a separate installation arsnova.itz.uni-halle.de, to all universities and other institutions of higher education in Saxony-Anhalt, which are organized in conjunction with the Verbund HET LSA, see Blog contributions.
  • The University of Innsbruck operates ARSnova (university-wide) on its own server, which is accessible only in the local campus network or via VPN:  arsnova.uibk.ac.at. This installation was independently carried out by the university´s computer center by means of the Installation Manual .  It has even created its own own documentation (website with links) of ARSnova.
  • Hessian universities and institutions of higher education use the statewide installation at the THM: arsnova.hessen.de. Registration and access for lecturers take place via the email address of their university. Students do not need a login.
  • The University of Wuppertal is currently installing ARSnova, university-wide, by means of the techinical ARSnova-Supports link from ARSnova (remote installation, CD-adjustments, LDAP and Moodle connection).

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What do I have to be aware of when it comes to Wi-Fi?

Please discuss with your Wi-Fi administrator if a firewall is activated:

To use ARSnova, the port 10443 has to be opened in a firewall in order to get a secure websocket connection. You can check this yourself by logging into your ARSnova session. Log yourself in as a Student, and give yourself “Live Feedback”. If the feedback beam is not displayed, the above mentioned port in the Wi-Fi has been blocked. In this case, the number badges (answers, users online, etc.) will not be updated in real-time, but rather be updated after reloading the page.

Please consider the following tips for the question:  How many listeners can max. participate?

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