Professor: iPad Application
Top Hat's Professor iPad Application will allow you to escape the podium and grant you the ability to teach and instruct anywhere in your classroom! The best analogy for how it works is like a remote control - you can use the specially designed iPad application to control what's happening within your Top Hat course. You'll simply want to log into your Top Hat account on your podium or laptop computer that's connected to your classroom projector, and then use the iPad to control what's being projected! More on this later, but for now, let's get started with the basics!
Downloading the App
To download the iOS Top Hat app, you’ll simply want to access the App Store from your Apple device and search for Top Hat. The app you’re looking for is free and called Top Hat Lecture. Once located, tap the +GET button and follow the onscreen prompts to download and install the app.
Note: Due to software restrictions our app is only available on iOS 7.1 or later.
Creating your Account
If you haven’t already done so, the first step will be to create a Top Hat professor's account. You can do so directly from your freshly downloaded Top Hat iPad app if you'd like! From the app home screen simply tap in the upper right hand corner where it says Sign up and follow the on-screen prompts to create your account.
The iPad will transmit the information you wish displayed automatically to your student's devices using the classroom's wireless network and the Top Hat servers.
To display the content onto the classroom projector screen, you must be logged into Top Hat from an in-class computer. Once logged into the appropriate course, you are all set to control everything directly from your iPad.
After signing into your account on the iPad, you will be brought to your course list. From here, select the appropriate course or swipe right to see further options such as your account settings and support.
After you select the appropriate course you will be taken into the course content tab where you will have access to the following items:
Tapping here will reveal for you your course access information. If you are logged into your Top Hat course on a computer with a connected projector in your classroom, then you can click the blue Present button in the upper right hand corner to display this information for your students if you'd like. The Join Code is the most important element as this is your unique course identifier; you'll likely want to put it on your course syllabus or website as well!
You can very easily take attendance using your Top Hat professor's iPad application. To begin tap where it says Attendance in the left hand menu and when you're ready to start the attendance session tap the present in the upper right hand corner. This will trigger the generation of a random 4-digit attendance code specific to this attendance session. Students will be prompted to input this code, but it will not be shown on their devices, the code will be presented on your projector. Students will enter and submit this code using their smart device or through SMS/text message.
Previewing your Questions, Discussions, Files, and Pages
Tapping a folder title will open it to expose its contents for you, and tapping on an individual question, discussion, slide presentation, or pages document will bring up that item and allow you to preview it without making it available to your students. From this preview screen you can also use the options along the top to delete the item, edit it, move it into a folder, assign it to your students for homework or review, and present it if you're in class (more on this later!)
Presenting Your Lecture
Upon arriving in your classroom for your lecture you'll want to log into your Top Hat account on both your podium or laptop computer that's connected to your classroom projector, and your iPad application. Be sure you're in the same course on both devices to ensure your content is displayed as desired on the projected screen! Once you're logged in, using your the Top Hat iPad application, tap on the title of the slide presentation you'd like to present, and then tap on the blue Present button in the upper right hand corner. This will project your presentation onto your classroom's screen as well as onto your students' devices and you can easily cycle through your slides using the left and right arrows along the bottom. Your students with smart devices will be able to go back through slides already presented but they will not be able to surpass the slide you're currently presenting.
While presenting your slides you can make use of our annotations feature by tapping on the the pen tool in the bottom left corner of your screen. Annotations will be displayed on your projected screen as well as your students' devices.
When the time comes that you want to ask your students a Top Hat question or launch a discussion, simply tap the + icon in the upper right hand corner of your presentation to display your course content. Select the item you'd like to activate and tapping it will cause it to be displayed on your projected screen and your students' devices ready for them to respond to. Should you want to navigate back to your slides momentarily while the item is active, simply swipe left and right to navigate between presented items (questions, discussions, files, etc.).
If it's a question you have activated, you'll be able to track the number of student submissions you've received using the Student Responses bar along the bottom of your screen. When you want to prevent students from responding any longer, simply tap where it says Pause or Disable (app version dependent) in the bottom left hand corner. This will prevent students from responding but will keep the question displayed on your your screen. When you're ready, you can tap the Show Results button along the bottom to see a breakdown of student responses, Show Answer to reveal the correct answer, or Close to take you back to your slides. It's really that simple!
Quick Ask Questions
On occasion you may not have time to create your questions as Top Hat questions before your lecture, but not to worry, we've got you covered! Should you come to a slide in your presentation that has a prepared question on it you can take advantage of our Quick-Ask feature which will take a screenshot of your current slide and attach it as a reference for your question. To begin, click on Quick Ask in the bottom right to launch the quick ask question creation box where you can select the type of question, set the correct answer, and view the screenshot that will be attached. Once your preferences have been selected, tap on Present in the upper right hand corner to ask the question of your students.
To view your course's Top Hat gradebook, simply tap on Gradebook in the upper banner on your course home screen. Here you will have a breakdown of each students' grades, including their course average, attendance score, and the number of content items they've missed. To see an in-depth breakdown of an individual student's grades simply tap on the students' name.
From the individual student page you can also manually adjust student grades using the gradebook in the iPad app. To do so, simply tap on the question to which you wish to adjust their grades and select Full Points, No Points, or Participation Points Only.
To access your course's Top Hat Student Manager, simply tap on Student in the upper banner on your course home screen. This will allow you to view a list of students currently enrolled in your Top Hat course, their basic student information, and whether or not they're currently online and active in your course.
Should you require further assistance with Top Hat, our Support Team is here to help! You can contact us directly by way of email (firstname.lastname@example.org), the in app support button, the red Can’t find what you are looking for? Ask Support! banner at the bottom of this page, or calling us at 1-888-663-5491.