The focus of the 1:1 program at Emmaus College is to provide tools and resources to the 21st Century learner. The use of mobile devices to facilitate learning enables students to have unlimited access to multiple digital resources.
Year 7 Laptop Program
At the beginning of (2017), discussions began in reassessing the on-going benefits of using iPads in a secondary education setting. This discussion was partly motivated by the fact that most primary schools now use iPads as their learning tool. Also, mobile laptop technologies have improved multimedia functionality and prices have come down considerably.
Students, Parents & teachers were surveyed for their feedback. The response was overwhelming. The overall feeling was in favour of moving to a laptop program at year 7.
Laptops for Year 7 students will be selected by the college. By having one standardised device across the year level, students will be able to learn skills from each other. Hardware and software configurations for the college Wifi network will also be made efficient & effective.
- Laptops offer more powerful software, featuring sophisticated functions.
- Students are able to demonstrate their learning with increased creativity using a variety of software and online tools.
- Through the use of different software and apps, students are able to choose the type of product they will construct to demonstrate their understanding – truly personalising learning.
- The multimedia capabilities of presenting information using images, sound & video assists all types of learning styles.
- Digital organisational skills are enhanced as students continue to understand the importance of file management.
- Students learn complex software skills dealing with many types of data. For example, statistical data and graphing skills.
- Access to information on a vast range of topics allows students to pursue areas they are interested in learning.
- Collaboration: Texts and documents (including PDFs) can be annotated and commented on by multiple students and teachers.
- Critical thinking and problem solving skills are enhanced using many sources of information.
One standard ICT device for collaboration, critical thinking, communication & creativity makes learning consistent as well as encouraging student group exploration of the many functions available.
The expectation is that students use the College selected laptop from years 7 to 9.
Laptops BYODD Years 10 to 12
The BYOD program began with Year 10s in 2016. Students were able to select their preferred OS platform, Windows or MAC. Minimum specifications were provided to families each year.
The policy changed at the end of 2018 with the BYODD (Bring your own Designated Device) Policy. The “designated device” is selected by the College.
Students moving from Year 9 into Year 10 must choose a new device selected by the College. The educational reasons for this approach are:
- ensuring the ICT devices last for at least 3 years;
- to enable continuous learning, a competitive 3-year warranty agreement is in place with our supplier should any components fail;
- ensuring Software versions are consistent enabling seamless teaching and learning; and
- all specifications are the same avoiding any incompatibility issues with the College Network and platforms.
The College selects two devices, Windows & MAC OS, purposely made for education. In consultation with their families, students chose one of the selected platforms. In this way, senior students can choose their preferred platform for learning.
In the senior years of secondary schooling, the continued use and expansion of digital resources available, will provide students with the opportunity to continue to further develop their skills of effective communication, collaboration, creativity and problem solving. These important skills will be beneficial in all professions once students enter the workforce.