Advantages of Chromebooks in the Classroom
Google is at the forefront of most things tech related, and it is no surprise that they have quickly become a leader in the transformation of the classroom. As of mid 2017, more than 50% of the country’s primary and secondary school students have utilized education apps created by Google. Furthermore, a little more than half of the mobile devices shipped to public schools are Chromebooks.
What is the explanation for this massive transformation and dominance in the realm of education? A lot can be said for what Chromebooks provide to students and teachers in the classroom. These devices go beyond access to online resources, as they increase student engagement and prepare students for careers in the digital workforce. As many schools are starting to deploy Chromebooks to teachers and students, let’s take a look at some of the advantages that these devices provide.
Ease of Use
Despite what may look like a traditional laptop or notebook, Chromebooks offer a few distinct advantages when compared to the conventional laptop. First of all these devices are extremely easy to use, as they are lightweight and start-up within seconds of powering on the device. Chromebooks update automatically, meaning that they are always current and require little to no work in order to maintain this status.
Chromebooks also offer a lot in regard to customization. Schools are able to manage user access to devices, allowing each Chromebook to be allocated for students of specific grades or subjects, or various faculty members. Schools can also explore usage and configuration reports for individual students or faculty. This level of control allows for systems to be established that filter and monitor internet content. Perhaps best of all, support is made available 24/7 for anyone experiencing problems using the device. This makes troubleshooting rather easy as help can be accessed at any time via email, chat, or phone.
The difference in price points when you compare a Chromebook to most other laptops is quite substantial. The starting price for many of these devices is around $150, which makes it accessible to most school districts. In addition to this, Google Apps for education services are completely free to all public schools, which is an added cost incentive for interested schools.
Being that applications are accessed via the “cloud” through various web browsers, students and teachers are able to access school documents from any device that has an internet connection. This in turn cuts back on resources and time associated with data upkeep across devices.
There is also a fair amount of money to be saved through the reduction of paper resources. With Chromebooks everything from tests to homework and textbook requirements can be managed online. Additionally costs associated with hard-copy books, additional teaching materials, and ink for printers are all reduced when schools invest in Chromebook rollouts. Not only does this save schools and teachers money, but it has a significant environmental impact as well.
Learning Through Technology
A recent study by Stanford University makes it very clear that having computers in the classroom helps students “develop the higher-order skills of critical thinking, analysis, and scientific inquiry through active engagement participation, frequent interaction, and connection to real world contexts.” Developing these skills early cultivates work habits that are both effective and modernized to meet the growing demand for technology proficient workers.