Top Benefits of Implementing BYOD in Classrooms
- May 20, 2015
iPads, tablets, iPhones, iPods and laptops represent the twenty-first century. These smart products of technology have disentangled our lives, exposing mankind to a brand new world of information and entertainment.
Today you can learn a foreign language even when you are mobile, thanks to numerous apps for the cell phones. And you can share your experiences with a friend settled in a different continent with a click of a mouse!
In short, modern technology has brought the world at your fingertips.
Having grown up with technology, Generation-Y almost seems to have married it. After all, it has made our lives incredibly convenient. You must have noticed how modern kids are addicted to their PlayStations 24X7. Gone are the days when your children would nag you for your permission to play with their friends in the park. Nowadays they are more interested in playing video games like ‘Nintendo’ or ‘Game of Thrones’ on a lazy Sunday afternoon.
In simpler words, employing the various products of technology has become a favorite habit of most youngsters – to such an extent that they are being termed as ‘gadget geeks’.
Due to the enormous impact of such ‘cool’ electronic devices, they have now started craving for the tools of technology even in their schools. This is simply due to the fact that they are heavily dependent on technology for sharing their updates, be it their latest party or a movie they have caught with their best buddies! Today, several educators have decided to introduce technology in the classroom sessions to leverage its numerous benefits. And that’s driving BYOD or the concept of bringing your own device to the classroom.
Let me share the top benefits of implementing BYOD (bring your own device) in classrooms:
- Increased Student Participation
Young learners prefer utilizing their personal electronic gadgets rather than depending on their school’s devices. A large number of teachers have observed that students complete their assignments more swiftly when they use their own iPads or mobile apps. Since they are habituated to use the products of technology throughout the day, employing these tools as they answer different questions in the class, is like a cakewalk for them. Moreover, when they are encouraged to bring their personal gadgets in the classroom, they start displaying increased interest in learning their lessons.
This stimulates an urge in them to participate more readily in the classroom and discuss their queries with their teachers. You know how essential classroom participation is for the academic progress of students!
Not only is the concept of BYOD super popular among students, teaching professionals and educational institutions, but it is also quite pocket-friendly. When all your students bring their devices to the class, the school is capable of saving a considerable amount of money that would otherwise have been incurred on establishing advanced electronic infrastructure.
For instance, academic institutions spend large sums of money while creating an IT lab, complete with computers and a digital network. But with the concept of BYOD, you can manage to motivate students to hone their digital literacy skills and even guide them in completing their tasks without the presence of an in-built computer lab.
- Student-centered Learning
As a high school student, my school teachers literally spoon-fed every piece of information to us. I recall how they taught us a new chapter, first explaining the concept on the blackboard and then referring to the textbooks. In addition, they dictated to us the study notes, that we scribbled hurriedly and later made attempts to memorize.
However, modern-day teaching has undergone a transformation with the improvement in technology, particularly with the implementation of the idea of BYOD.
Today, teachers emphasize on the importance of being able to filter a massive amount of information, aimed at identifying and seeking the information that is required. It empowers students to do a good amount of research on the topics they learn and ask questions on if they face any issue.
- Greater Student Communication
The more your students collaborate with their fellow classmates, the higher their chances are of success inside and even outside the confinements of their classrooms.
Most people communicate with their peers and re-connect with old acquaintances with the aid of technology. They join online forums and communities, join Facebook groups or Twitter groups, to share their knowledge. Also, they imbibe fresh expertise and information on a wide range of subjects and interests, using similar techniques in social networking platforms.
BYOD has the potential to let students:
- contact teachers
- get in touch with students belonging to other academic institutes
- interact with students and teachers freely
They can discuss about the latest trends in classroom learning or any topic that is included in their curriculum by applying the system of BYOD.
- Personalized Teaching Approach
Generally, academics tends to repel most students. Perhaps this is one of the most common reasons why your pupils start chatting with their classmates the moment you turn your back to the class, to explain a formula on the blackboard. Then, there are students who find lectures monotonous and, therefore, seldom are able to learn about the key points you have discussed in your last lecture.
When students are turning to their personal electronic equipment to complete their assignments, they find it easier to understand the objectives of learning a particular lesson. Some educators have started making their students interested by letting them:
- play study games on their devices.
- create projects using the devices.
You would also discover that students can learner at a faster pace when the information you provide them is accessible to them anytime, anywhere.
- Innovative Teaching Tool
Your students would fall in love with your sessions if you innovate your style of teaching. Before the arrival of the Internet, educators would stress on direct transfer of instruction. In other words, students would try to accumulate data based on the subjects they were being taught, from textbooks as well as from reference books. But thanks to a breakthrough in technology, modern-day educators have modified their teaching techniques.
Here are only a few of what they use to impart education:
This makes the process smarter and more rapid. If a particular student is absent from a class, he can easily mail his assignment to you even if he is unable to hand it over to you physically
Also recommended: 10 Essential Skills for Today’s Teachers
- Better Organization
Any lesson is incomplete if it does not include:
- adequate notes
- reference material
- sample papers
While imparting your lessons, you must be delivering lectures that your students take down in their notebooks. Furthermore, you offer leaflets and large volumes of study materials to your students. These are sure to prove to be beneficial for them for their exams.
You can easily avoid any fatal circumstances where the students are unable to copy the notes, if you permit your pupils to bring their own technological devices. If you do so, all you need to do is scan the study materials and mail them over to your learners. And if you wish to share something about an interesting resource related to your lessons, use Google ‘circles’ or Facebook groups.
Another thing you can do is ask your students to maintain all their notes, assignments and mock test papers under separate folders in the devices. Getting organized is the key to scoring brilliant grades in exams.
- Preparing Students for the Workplace
Employers would prefer a digitally smarter employee rather than somebody who lacks sufficient digital knowledge. By digital expertise, I definitely do not mean to refer to one’s basic IT skills that might include browsing the Internet or using an Excel worksheet, creating PowerPoint presentations and so on.
If students are familiar with the ideas of social marketing or working with the help of ‘Google Docs’, they would be better-equipped for a professional environment. That’s simply because nowadays jobseekers should be capable of multitasking in order to survive the intense competition and rat-race!
Constant exposure to technology would contribute to the development of digital skills in your students. It would gradually prepare them for their potential workplace and make them more technologically-savvy, which is the need of the hour.
Just imagine: how would your students be comfortable if he is asked to communicate a firm’s latest strategies to a potential client through video conferencing, if he has never engaged in a video chat with his friends?
So, you expect that your students would do a fabulous job with their school project this year, right? Well, what resources do the school offer them to give their best shot in such creative endeavors?
I know your answer.
You want to blurt out that your school possesses a computer lab and a library to assist the students in assimilating materials to complete their project.
But then, how many students are truly eager to sift through countless books to collect information for a project? And even if they are willing to utilize the PowerPoint software installed in the school, it wouldn’t really make their work much creative.
On the other hand, if your students use their personal technological gadgets, they will be:
- free to explore with a large variety of creative options.
- able to navigate between different websites.
- able to enrich their project with attractive pictures and graphical illustrations.
Moreover, your students can also include various kinds of latest news and information, if they use their devices, along with a stable Internet connection.
Would your students prefer shuffling about in the library, leafing through innumerable pages as they make attempts to prepare their History notes?
Of course not.
Their exam is just around the corner and naturally they hardly have any time to lose.
That’s not all too.
You have asked them to submit an assignment the following day, and your students might have planned to use the notes, which they are preparing, in the assignment.
My question is: why would you let your students delay their research time unnecessarily?
I would suggest you think about an alternative solution to this problem.
The solution is present right before your eyes.
Instead of spending time locked up in a library reading different textbooks, inspire your pupils to practice looking up websites for preparing their notes. It would save them a considerable amount of time, as information is just a click away. Within seconds, the search engines would throw up a large number of results that are enough to answer your query. Therefore you receive all the materials associated to your subject almost instantaneously!
- Making Learning a Continuous Process
Every teacher dreams of having students who possess an eternal thirst for knowledge. For, learning is a constant process and an eternal experience. And, as you already know, knowledge is power.
During the era when the Internet was a luxury for millions, the scope of learning was indeed quite restricted. Students were exposed to a learning process only till the moment they were seated in their classrooms.
Of course, even during that time students revised their lessons once they returned home and learnt every formulae that was being taught in their schools. However, they were deprived of new and a constant flow of information that modern students enjoy.
Today, when your pupils go back to their homes, they can use:
- their devices
- online games
These enable them to imbibe knowledge in more ways than one.
- Instilling a Sense of Responsibility
Every classroom shelters different kinds of learners. While some might forget to deliver their home work within the specified deadline, some others might lose their notes. Some others might fail to turn up for their classes due to some reason or the other.
As teachers, you are sure to have bumped into careless students such as these. I bet you have often sighed wondering, “When would my students act in a more responsible manner”?
But, you would start noticing a marked contrast among students who use their personal technological appliances. For instance, such students are known to take great care of their gadgets. They constantly check if their devices are working properly and keep installing anti-virus updates into their machines to make sure that they function effectually and are completely safe. This instills in them a sense of responsibility that plays a crucial role in developing students into more responsible individuals when they grow up. It also turns them into efficient employees when they are a part of a professional organization.
The concept of BYOD is spreading across educational institutions like wildfire and has gone viral among learning communities and educators.
If technology is a part and parcel of our daily lives, why can’t it be adopted inside learning environments?
Believe it or not, technology has immense potential as an intelligent teaching tool in the 21st century. The best part of BYOD is that it makes the process of learning more student-friendly and flexible.
Bring portable, it helps your learners stay connected to study materials and academic resources round the clock!
If you know about a few more benefits of utilizing BYOD in the classroom, feel free to share them with us.
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