Bring Your Own Device - BYOD | BYOT

The details of this chart are less important than the process of creating it. After playing with a range of devices (not just the latest/greatest/most expensive), reading/watching how others have implemented a BYOD in the classroom and school, and trying it out with your own students, get together with a few other educators and fill out your own chart. Here's a blank chart we give out as a part of a Think-Pair-Share. You might want to divide it into sections and consider the affordances and constraints by user (teacher/student/special needs student/administrator), use (reading/word processing/movie making/note taking/etc.), or taxonomy (Bloom/SAMR/etc.). Hopefully you'll revise the chart as you implement the BYOD initiative over time. This can definitely be combined with ideas of balancing technology, content and pedagogy. (Check out this podcast on TPaCK and SAMR.)

Related page: Affordances & Constraints Chart Activity

Are we comparing few or no devices to a BYOD initiative, a school computer lab, a few laptop carts, or a 1:1 school funded initiative or something in between?
  • Cost of purchasing and maintaining desktops and laptops could drop for the district
  • Students have access to the same devices at home & school - what they learn in either place can benefit the other - students work with what they are already comfortable with
  • Probably more student centered since they are their personal devices(though maybe too individually centered)
  • Potential for higher student engagement
  • Potentially less district cost for hardware (servers, storage, and computers), software, and maintenance (not network) due to parent financing
  • School equipment becomes dated quickly (but will parents be able to keep up any better in most districts?)
  • Opportunity to teach life skills for rights/responsibilities, multitasking/distraction, interpersonal communication, etc.
  • Some devices come with their own data plan, negating the stress on the network and potentially up even when the district system is down (though accountability management is difficult to impossible with these devices)
  • Opportunity to learn/practice tool flexibility and problem-solving (hopefully without losing too much time for other important skills/content)
  • Compared to "powering down," students have access to information and applications that have great potential to alter their learning
  • Students can find, explore, and use additional apps as they see fit without waiting for permission from teacher, school, or district (might be good to help educate parents so they can decide how much oversight they want to have)
  • Stress on networks not designed for BYOD numbers, generations, requirements - may require funds for updating
  • Potential security risks
  • Will it increase the digital divide between the haves and have nots?
  • Will the problems associated with "keeping up with the Jones" become as prevalent with devices as other areas like clothing?
  • Will the devices work well with the online tools you expect students to use? (Moodle, wiki, blog, etc.) Electronic textbooks?
  • Will there be ways for students to charge their devices? How will battery life affect what can and cannot be done?
  • What happens when a device breaks down or breaks and isn't repaired or replaced for awhile?
  • What do you do when students don't bring their devices and only X% of students have a device that day?
  • Compatibility for collaborative activities
  • Lack of uniformity (or equal capability), forcing all users to the lowest common denominator - "BYODcreates false equivalencies between any objects that happen to use electricity." Stager
  • Teachers will need to develop new management strategies. Many would prefer to just ban them.
  • When/how will they be allowed/disallowed for assessment?
  • What student rights/responsibilities will come along with the devices? "Responsible Use" policies?
  • Less control for the district, school, and teacher (parts of this could be seen as an affordance too)
  • Will require time for teachers, students, and parents to adjust
  • Will require time for teacher development (hopefully within learning communities)
  • Students can (and some will at some point) install inappropriate apps or content (they can already do this other ways anyway)
  • You may need to implement a separate virtual local area network for students' and staff's devices
  • Time spent figuring out how to work devices or how to get files/data from one machine to another is time not spent on learning the content. It is time spent learning the technology and workflow.

Questions Raised:
  • Would a BYOT policy be different? Meaning students learn to use and master technologies that can travel from device to device such as web mail, Evernote, Dropbox, wikis, blogs, etc.
  • Will it increase the digital divide between the haves and have nots?
  • Will filtered devices (on district wifi) be at an advantage/disadvantage compared to unfiltered (cellphone data) devices?
  • Will the problems/distractions associated with "keeping up with the Jones" become as prevalent with devices as other areas like clothing?

Balancedtech's Favorite Links on BYOD from Diigo