Keep taking the tablets
Our first ‘Tablets in Learning and Teaching’ workshop took place this week, with around 25 people dropping in at one point or another, including external presenters Dave Foord from the Tablet Academy and Ola Aiyegbayo from the University of Huddersfield.
We heard from Sara Ronca and Clare Hutton how they have been using their loan iPads so far this semester – with benefits and issues being apparent. We’ve been blogging over the summer about different techniques for ‘mirroring’ the display on the teaching room projector, and it’s clear that this is an area where glitches can occur. Clare talked, inter alia, about the Wasteland app she’s been using (ie relating to T S Eliot’s poem), and this looks fantastic – potentially transformative for teaching, in the way it makes it possible to navigate the text and brings in other media elements. Sara has been making use of the annotation capabilities of the iPad using a stylus.
Dave talked about his experiences of the primary, secondary and FE sectors, which are arguably ahead of HE in this area. We saw some inspiring examples of imaginative work created by children using a variety of iPad apps.
Ola presented early findings from his BJET project at Huddersfield, as well as looking at ways of categorising the use of tablets in teaching and learning. The key take-home message was that it’s not enough for institutions to simply hand out tablets to staff; in addition to technical set-up advice, staff need longer-term support in making the most of the technology, or they will either not use it or use it in ways which replicate what they have already been doing.
We’ll be organising further events on this theme over the course of the year.