Today, more than ever before, teachers need to be able to rely on educational technology. Even before the Covid-19 outbreak, there was an increasing level of pressure on schools to invest in educational technology and educational software in classrooms.
Even with this added pressure, school leaders and educators should resist the temptation to immediately spend money on devices and software without considering the full value of the investment.
A clear, goal-driven plan for adoption should be established to create an environment where the benefits of technology are linked to existing academic priorities.
Find an education technology partner invested in innovation
Technology partners invested in innovation can also help decision-makers to understand the value of investing in technology that will be effective in the classroom setup and that will assist teachers in infusing curricula with technology.
The five-step plan to understanding the VOI (value of investment) is as follows:
- Budget for each cost, including direct expenses (the purchase of devices) and indirect expenses (integration and training).
- Calculate the anticipated savings and efficiencies that will be gained by identifying opportunities to save on costs and gain additional efficiencies.
- Measure the qualitative benefits. Identify non-financial benefits, assign relative importance or value to each, calculate the qualitative benefits in measurable terms and compare the value for each project competing for funding to prioritise the technology investment.
- Consider the risks and benefits by determining the probability of success for the proposed technology project and weighing up the risks and benefits for students, staff and the community at large.
- Assess the results.
By following the five-step plan, school leaders and educators will have a clear view of the full value of an investment in the digital transformation of classrooms, as well as the consequences of neglecting to integrate technology into the curriculum appropriately.
Technology partners should be able to assist decision-makers in working through this five-step plan by providing accurate information, innovative solutions and integration support to accelerate the adoption process.
Practical Advice for Adopting Educational Technology
Consideration should be made about the learning experiences the schools will provide through technology, taking into account the practical factors that help make the goals possible, such as:
- Teaching Methodologies
What will be introduced or changed?
- Technology Access
Will it be used only in school, or can it also be remotely accessed?
- Physical Space
How much will be used? How much additional space will be needed?
What are the time requirements and current availability?
- Existing Curriculum
How will technology be incorporated to ensure education mandates are covered?
- The Role of Teachers
How will their responsibilities change once the technology is implemented? How will this impact group learning versus individualised lessons?
Integrating educational technology should be a carefully researched process with clear directives on the available budget and implementation strategy.
Failure to properly plan the investment into educational technology can severely impact the school’s financial situation and it can create far-reaching issues for the teachers and students who should benefit from the educational technology available to them.