Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) implementations hold the promise of rich 1:1 learning anytime, anywhere, but there are many barriers that schools need to overcome to ensure a successful deployment. A new e-book, Empowering Learning with BYOD, from Bloxx, addresses the organizational, pedagogical, technical and cultural challenges schools face in harnessing the full potential of their BYOD initiatives.
“With the introduction of BYOD, schools need to take into consideration a number of issues including updating or adapting their acceptable use policies, how to address Web-related risks while providing accessibility to digital content for learning and how to minimize BYOD’s impact on the school’s network infrastructure,” says Charles Sweeney, CEO of Bloxx, a leader in Web content filtering and email security. “Our new e-book is a primer for school administrators and IT professionals to integrate BYOD into the curriculum, along with a step-by-step guide for creating a roll-out strategy in their schools or districts that takes full advantage of enhanced BYOD learning opportunities.”
The Empowering Learning with BYOD e-book highlights the ways in which staff can adapt teaching approaches to maximize the benefits of every student having their own device, and how schools can balance e-security with access to digital content both at school and home.
Major sections of the e-book address BYOD models, policy considerations, new types of pedagogy and the cultural, communications and technology challenges in creating a workable BYOD strategy. According to the book’s author, leading educational technologist and award-winning teacher Ollie Bray, “It’s important for any technology deployment to have a shared vision among school management, teachers, students and the wider school community, including parents. A successful technology deployment starts with strong leadership combined with a vision of how to improve education and a real desire to effect change.”
“Pedagogy needs to be at the heart of a BYOD strategy as teaching and learning should look very different in a 1:1 environment,” continued Bray. “At the same time, schools need to address technology challenges, particularly around network infrastructure, and creating acceptable use policies that include access to appropriate digital content that enhances learning. Many BYOD initiatives fail because schools don’t put in place the bandwidth and infrastructure to support them.” The Bloxx e-book describes some of the key questions schools need to address when it comes to both infrastructure and access. “Next-generation Web filters, like those from Bloxx, allow flexibility in usage policies. It is no longer necessary to choose whether to give the most restricted or most open access to all users because different types of users, at different levels or ages can have different access, and at different times,” concludes Bray.