Why use a Tablet to teach? The whiteboard works just fine.

“There are many challenges in higher education environments, particularly engineering education in a multicultural society. Some of these include the effective communication of difficult mathematical concepts maintaining students’ attention span, the difficulties of catering for individual student needs in a large classroom environment, different paces of student learning, and lack of fluency in written English just to name a few.” (Ravishankar, Ladouceur, Eaton, Ambikairajah, 2014)

These issues have profoundly affected the way engineering faculty have taught. To achieve the best results, innovative pedagogical design and technology have stepped in to support this new shift.

One big advantage is – Mirroring – a feature that lets you display everything that is on a tablet to the big screen. Whether an instructor is presenting in PowerPoint, switching to a video on YouTube, using Google Maps, or annotating over a PDF, they need it all to project.

Why Use Tablets to Teach?

Tablets hit the sweet spot between a computer and a piece of paper — the reason it’s catching on so quickly in the classroom is instructors no longer have to move between a computer screen and printed documents; an iPad/tablet takes care of both.

Tablets are mobile. Instructors can lecture from notes anywhere in the classroom, and refer to course readings held in one hand. Tablets remove the barriers. For example, when reading lesson plans, taking notes on presentations, or engaging course materials, holding the tablet like a piece of paper opens up the classroom and changes the dynamic of the classroom.

Tablets keep notes organized in one place. Things that are typically printed — grading forms, lesson plans, course readings — can be viewed and annotated on the tablet.  Documents are easily shared with the swipe of a finger. Students can access what was taught the day before with the touch of a button. Faculty can take attendance and keep track of grades quickly and easily on the iPad/tablet

Tablets also support digital conversations. For example, using Twitter to promote discussion in class. Tablets make it easy to type a tweet to students using your class hashtag.

Tablets allow you to grade anywhere – on the bus or train. Creating handwritten feedback is immediately shareable.

Tablets also support streaming video and image projection.  You can show class videos, presentations, or images right from your iPad/tablet. Tablets can use polling and clicker technology and whiteboard projection. A single tablet has the potential to replace a suite of technologies and is perfect for classrooms with little technology support.

(Teaching with Tablets. By: HEDGE, STEPHANIE, Education Digest, 0013127X, Feb2013, Vol. 78, Issue 6)