The Educause Centre for Applied Research (ECAR) has recently published their “ECAR Study of Undergraduate Students and Information Technology, 2013” report.
Key findings of the report:
- Students recognize the value of technology but still need guidance when it comes to better using it for academics.
- Students prefer blended learning environments while beginning to experiment with MOOCs.
- Students are ready to use their mobile devices more for academics, and they look to institutions and instructors for opportunities and encouragement to do so.
- Students value their privacy, and using technology to connect with them has its limits.
- Students expect their instructors – not others – to train them to effectively use the technology required for coursework (e.g., use of the CMS, hardware, and software- including specialty software and common productivity software). Instructors need support, encouragement, and possibly incentives to do so.
- Educate your students about MOOCs; most students are unaware of them. Institutions have a fleeting opportunity to contextualize MOOCs for students in a way that will mesh with the institution’s own MOOC strategy.
- Create (or update) a strategy for incorporating mobile device use into the classroom. Address the IT infrastructure barriers (such as a lack of convenient charging outlets and/or charging stations and insufficient network access) that keep students from using their devices effectively while on campus.
- Approach learner analytics purposefully and thoughtfully by adhering to information privacy principles. Collect data for a stated and transparent purpose in order to build students’ confidence in learner analytics activities.