Monthly Archives: November 2012

Preliminary Results from the first iPad Pilot Student Survey

Last week, during the two days leading up to the Thanksgiving holiday, our current pilot teachers distributed a survey to their students to gather feedback on their experience with the iPad so far.  The survey was created by members of the 1:1 Committee, and asked the students 18 questions that fell into 9 topics: overall opinion, frequency of use, power loss and charging, peripherals (stylus, external keyboard, etc.), technical issues, academic use, gaming, and educational experience.  Using SurveyMonkey, we collected all the responses and began taking a preliminary look at the data to glean how the pilot students felt about their iPads.  SurveyMonkey has some built-in tools to run descriptive statistics (averages, percentages, etc.), and can automatically generate various types of charts, giving the data a visual representation, which makes it much easier to get a handle on things.  It also lets you create and select categories to code open-ended responses, which is handy if you have a lot of questions that require the user to enter in text.

A brief look at the data reveals some positive findings, and some areas to keep improving.   

To what extent do you agree or disagree with the following statement: Overall, the iPad has contributed positively to my learning experience.

 Have you had any technical problems with the iPad?

(“Yes” responses included problems sending email, downloading apps through AbsoluteApps, and apps crashing)

Which iPad application(s) have you found to be be the most beneficial to your learning?

(Dropbox, Evernote, Notes, Pages, and UPAD were the most frequent responses.)

Students also cited a number of successes and challenges in learning with the iPad, with successes ranging from sharing notes and course material, submitting assignments electronically, and organization, whereas challenges included setting up various accounts (for Dropbox, Evernote, etc.) and distractions presented by downloading games onto the device.

I see this kind of “temperature taking” as both a reminder that we need to constantly reflect on technology integration from our students’ viewpoints.

Screencasting and the Upcoming iPad Summit

Over the past couple of weeks, our pilot teachers have been experimenting with new apps and some exciting new classroom activities.  One colleague is having his students use the Educreations app to create screencasts of themselves explaining some historical terms and events.  His students then post these screencasts to the course blog, creating a sort of crowd-sourced repository of miniature lessons.  Students can view these posts at any time, and leave comments for each other along the way.  My colleague says he began moving in this direction because he wanted to incorporate more opportunities for student creation in his course, and especially to take advantage of the iPad.

In other news, the pilot teachers will be heading to Boston next week for a two-day “iPad Summit” hosted by EdTechTeacher.  The conference includes a slew of workshops, lectures, round table discussions, and information sessions on using the iPad in education.  For more information on the conference, visit edtechteacher.org, or go directly to the conference website:ipadsummitusa.org.