iPad Research in Primary Schools
The Technology Enhanced Learning Research group, led by Kevin Burden (Principal Investigator) based in the Faculty of Education, have recently completed the first national evaluation to investigate the use and impact of tablet technologies (in this case the iPad), across schools and homes in Scotland.
The study was based in eight schools and six local authorities across Scotland where iPad devices were being piloted to investigate a range of issues associated with the deployment of personal mobile devices as tools for teaching and learning.
- The ownership of a personal mobile device, like the iPad, facilitates many of the pedagogical aspirations set out in Scotland’s Curriculum for Excellence framework.
- The adoption of mobile technologies on a personal basis significantly increases access to technology for students, both inside and beyond school, with many attendant benefits for learning which include greater motivation, engagement, parental involvement, and understanding of complex ideas.
- Personal ‘ownership’ of the device is seen as the single most important factor for successful use of this technology
- Teachers are equally engaged by the use of a device like the iPad which has a low learning curve enabling them to use it immediately as a teaching tool and a learning tool for themselves
- The use of the device is contributing to significant changes in the way teachers approach their professional role as educators and is changing the way they see themselves and their pedagogy:
- Parents also appear to become more engaged with the school and their child’s learning when the iPad travels home with the student