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Top Hat - Overview (UW-Madison)

This document provides a description of Top Hat, along with some basic support resources.

Select this link to list all Top Hat documents from the Learn@UW-Madison Knowledgebase at the bottom of this page.

What is Top Hat?

Top Hat is an active learning platform that provides instructors with several options for engaging students: asking questions, presenting polls, creating and assigning textbooks, giving quizzes, providing in class discussion etc. 

Please see DoIT’s Top Hat IT Service Page for a more detailed description of Top Hat

Tool Functionality Details

Basic Functionality

  • Top Hat allows instructors to ask students questions in real time: whether for polling and/or quizzing.

    • Question types include:

      • Multiple Choice

      • Word Answer

      • Fill In The Blank

      • Numeric Answer

      • Matching

      • Click on Target

      • Sorting

      • Long Answer

      • For more information on the Top Hat Question types please see this document.

Note: there are additional question types (such as Video and LaTeX) available in Beta.

  • Top Hat allows instructors to take attendance and assign a grade value to that  attendance if desired. Additionally, Top Hat has an optional geolocation feature that can be enabled for attendance that will allow only those in the physical classroom space to mark themselves present.

  • The Top Hat-Canvas integration allows instructors to easily send any grades students earn in Top Hat questions and content to the Canvas gradebook. The Top Hat-Canvas integration also allows for automatic syncing and the ability to create Top Hat assignments in Canvas. See Top Hat - Syncing Grades and Rosters with Canvas (LTI 1.3) for more information on the Top Hat-Canvas integration.

Advanced Functionality

  • Top Hat is also a content authoring platform that allows instructors to create interactive content such as built-in quizzes, self-checks, interactive images, video, audio, etc. (Note: Top Hat does not currently have an integration with Kaltura.)

    • Instructors can link, but not embed, this content in Canvas.

    • Any points assigned can be pushed to the Canvas gradebook.

  • Instructors can also upload PowerPoint presentations to Canvas and add interactive features to those presentations.

    • Top Hat can also ingest PDFs, though those PDFs cannot be edited once within Top Hat.

    • Instructors can assign content such as PowerPoint presentations for students to review.

  • Students can take notes and highlight content in Top Hat.

  • Top Hat has learning analytics data for student interactions within its platform.

Use Cases

Getting Started

For instructions on how to get started with Top Hat, please see Top Hat - Getting Started

Additional Resources




    Keywords:top hat tophat student response system SRS clicker iclicker turning i>clicker overview getting started get intro introduction 101   Doc ID:59791
    Owner:Learn@UW Madison .Group:Learn@UW-Madison
    Created:2016-01-15 12:34 CSTUpdated:2022-11-22 09:35 CST
    Sites:DoIT Help Desk, Learn@UW-Madison
    Feedback:  0   0