The tablet revolution has hit education. Highly portable devices with intuitive touch screen technology, iPads and other tablets are hugely popular as user friendly gadgets for learners of all ages. They give access to online educational resources including learning apps and they provide new ways to teach, create and share resources.

Whether it’s making a film, using a design app, asking for help with homework, tablets have opened up a myriad of ways for students and teachers to develop their knowledge.

When it comes to introducing tablets to a school, college or university, there are issues that need to be discussed before learners even get their hands on a device. Here are 3 factors that every reseller should be raising right from the very start:

Device security

  • Set up a mobile security solution to help protect against the risks caused by lost or stolen devices. A good solution will help to secure devices, their contents and usage.
  • Protect devices while they are in use with anti-virus software and the use of encrypted flash and USB drives
  • Every establishment should have a clear procedure for the storage, distribution and collection of mobile devices
  • Equally, there need to be a number of approved staff, trained in the technology and care of all devices
  • Each device should be numbered and assigned to a location, to make it easier to identify
  • For the safe and easy storage and recharging of devices, there are security carts, safes and cabinets that can securely store, charge and sync a large number of tablets together.
  • Use laptop locking cables to secure devices while they are out of safe storage.

Learner safety

  • Look at parental style controls that ensure students cannot install inappropriate apps, access unsuitable material online or transmit any personally identifiable information
  • It may be appropriate to restrict browsing to a range of pre-selected urls.
  • It is generally best for GPS location services to be switched off, with only approved staff able to switch this on if needed for a set period of time.
  • If older students need to keep their course work to themselves, privacy filters can help restrict the contents of the screen to the eyes of the user

Ease of use

  • Run tests. Recommend that the school or college checks the reliability of its wired connection and whether it can support a large number of devices connecting at the same time. It would be worth testing speeds at different times of day.
  • Ensure that approved teaching staff have the permission or passcodes to enable them to install apps or access material as and when needed.
  • For installing apps, think about whether this should be done centrally to save time or if it’s appropriate for apps to be installed to individual devices
  • In terms of accessories, protective covers will give students the ability to prop the tablet up when typing.
  • Think about the environment the tablets will be used in. Does the school need adjustable blinds on windows to prevent glare?