Wednesday, May 18, 2011

6 Reasons Tablets Are Ready for the Classroom

This is an excellent article written by Vineet Madan. He is Vice President of McGraw-Hill Higher Education eLabs, so you would expect him to be making some big predictions, but instead he travels the road of reason and makes a number of solid assertions about both consumer use and the benefits of the iPad in the classroom. He is realistic about the problems associated with introducing the new technology but is optimistic about the educational outcomes for the students. Well worth the read!

Since the debut of the iPad, tablets have captured the imagination of consumers. In just one year, the iPad surpassed even the most optimistic of projections to define a brand new product category and become the best-selling gadget of all time, and Forrester analysts project that in 2011, tablet sales will more than double.
But are tablets ready for the classroom? Though tablets have caught on with consumers, the higher education market has been slower to adopt, and understandably so. From grades to degrees to job placement after graduation, the devices that are used in classrooms are tied to important outcomes.
As a result, colleges and universities must proceed carefully when considering whether to adopt a new technology on a large scale. However, reports from recent iPad pilot programs at schools across the country have been positive, and some colleges have even begun distributing tablets to all of their students. As we wrap up the first post-iPad school year, do we know enough to make the “fad, fail, magical” call? I think so.
By looking at all that tablets offer in the context of student behavior and some of the recent trends in education, it’s clear that tablets are ready for the classroom. Here’s a look at the top reasons why.
1. Tablets Are the Best Way to Show Textbooks.......

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