“Don’t Forget the Electives”

This morning, I presented a session entitled, “Don't Forget the Electives.” The session comes from my efforts to support music teachers in their efforts to integrate technology into their classroom. Here are the major points from my presentation:

  1. Many technology iniatives are based on the need for a keyboard, particularly to “write papers.” Keyboards get in the way of many elective courses, and clamshell devices literally do not fit in many elective courses.
  2. GAFE (Google Apps for Education) is no longer a reason to choose a device, GAFE is becoming more device agnostic all the time.
  3. There is no such thing as a perfect device, and the best device today may not be the best device in a year.
  4. As a music teacher, I am convinced that the iPad is the best device for music education, and will continue to advocate for that device until something better comes along (and I will keep looking)
  5. Many elective courses require specific software or functionality–GAFE is not enough.
  6. Many elective courses cannot “substitute” or “augment” instruction with a specific device.
  7. If you choose a device, it may not be useable “in” an elective course without extensive modification and redefinition. You need to have different expectations for elective courses in terms of how they are expected to integrate technology in their courses.
  8. If you choose a technology initiative, be honest about its limitations (yes, even the iPad has them) and stop trying to sell that your device of choice can be equally used in all courses across the board.

I will post a link to my presetation later today.


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