Significant growth in 1:1 initiatives in schools, national survey says

Mobile tech adoption is growing significantly in schools, and district interest in 1:1 is particularly strong, according to a new report sponsored by Amplify. The national report, conducted each year by IESD and STEM Market Impact, is based on survey responses from 332 district leaders. (The full report can be downloaded here.)

Of the district leaders who responded, 71 percent said that a quarter or more of their schools have adopted mobile technology, up from 60 percent in 2013. Only 12 percent said their districts had not adopted mobile technology, down from 21 percent in 2013. One-fifth of leaders said their districts were likely to adopt or expand mobile technology in the next year or two. The most common sources of funding for mobile tech are district technology funds and general district funds.

While shared class sets of mobile devices on carts are still the norm, the survey suggests that interest in 1:1 is trending upward. A large majority (82 percent) of districts are interested in implementing or expanding a 1:1 mobile device solution within the next two years. One fifth of the districts surveyed reported having a 1:1 ratio of mobile devices to students, an increase from 12 percent in 2013. Fewer districts said that multiple classrooms share a cart with a class set of mobile devices: 42 percent, a decrease from 51 percent in 2013.

Of the district leaders who responded, 71 percent said that a quarter or more of their schools have adopted mobile technology, up from 60 percent in 2013.

Educators continue to see mobile tech as a way to improve and expand learning for the future. According to the survey, the most commonly expected benefits are: increased student engagement (47 percent), increased student achievement (40 percent) and personalized instruction to meet individual students’ needs (40 percent). Leaders reported that they believe the best apps for improving student instruction are digital textbooks (69 percent) and creation tools such as video and audio (55 percent). Collaboration tools and student productivity tools also received high marks.

Despite enthusiasm among educators, challenges to mobile tech adoption remain. Respondents from districts that adopted mobile technology reported that the major difficulties are: professional development and support for teachers (70 percent) and mobile device management (60 percent). Technology infrastructure was also a common concern.

You can find more details or download the full report here.