On hardware and software selection…

Graham Stanley has created an excellent checklist to guide teachers in integrating technology into their classroom practice which I find particularly useful when combined with The Principles for Digital Development (“The Principles”, n.d.) e.g.:

This post has been adapted from ‘On design principles in international education projects’.


What Are the Knowns and Unknowns in m-Education?

In search of the ideal educational technology device


The Health & Education Advice & Resource Team (HEART). (2014). Education Technology Topic Guide. Retrieved from: http://www.heart-resources.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/Educational-Technology-Topic-Guide.pdf

The Principles for Digital Development. (n.d). Retrieved from: http://digitalprinciples.org/

  • Angela Moore
    January 4, 2017

    Great synthesis! Thanks for including the links to Stanley’s blog (have just followed on twitter) and the principles of digital development. I feel the principles are applicable across both hardware and software choices and confirms to me that we have moved on from the ‘why’ to the ‘how’ when integrating technology. I am keen to investigate ways of enabling open source authoring tools, as exposure to a global community is vital for my history students in developing cultural understandings.
    The community response (pdf below) mentions an open data interoperability layer that can control access and how information is shared with public/private audiences. I think this would enable freedom to creatively interact without the restrictions of firewalls, whilst also protecting the safety and privacy of students. I am curious to find out how we can apply such control to students own devices though, smart phones included. If the boundary between formal and informal learning environments are blurring with m-learning (a good thing), how do our hardware choices impact on student safety and privacy? And if the lines are blurring, where does our teacher responsibility with these tools end? How do we maintain control in open innovation learning when students are using the hardware and software at home as well as at school?
    Defintely worth investigating and excellent food for thought, thanks Benita!



    • Benita Rowe
      January 4, 2017

      Hi Angela, thanks for your feedback! 🙂 I just finished reading ‘Language Learning with Technology’ by Stanley and found it really useful. A lot of the activities/ principles can be adapted and used in non-LOTE/ ESL subjects.
      You raised a good point about Principle 6. I agree that as teachers we need to develop responsible data practices: minimize the collection of personal data, separate and make sure that personally identifiable information is stored securely (‘layers of access’ mentioned in Principle 6), be transparent about what we are using and collecting with the school, the students and their parents and make sure that we have their consent. I’ve worked with educational institutions where it is illegal to use any application that stores data on servers in the U.S. – this meant investigating Open Source options that could be run on local servers, e.g. substituting Dropbox with OwnCloud and using eXeLearning with Ustad Mobile to distribute content and assessments on mobile devices. In Australia we have a lot more legal leeway to experiment with different applications but it does still depend to a large extent on the preferences of the school leadership and parent body.
      In terms of restricting students’ access to websites via their mobile devices – if they are accessing the websites at school on their mobile devices through the school’s WiFi (i.e. the school controls the network) the school can set up filters. If the students are accessing websites on their mobile devices (i.e. via their own mobile data plan which most have) it is technically possible to jam the mobile signal (without jamming the school’s WiFi) – but also illegal. Filters also have their limits – the students could always set up a proxy server for example to get around them. I think including digital literacy and citizenship as a cross-curriculum priority is probably the best way forward – here is my digital literacy and citizenship resource stash. Cheers! Benita

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