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Role of Teacher and Student in BYOD

Role of Teacher and Student in BYOD

Author: Trisha Fyfe

This lesson provides students with an overview of the the changing role of the Teacher and Student in the BYOD Classroom


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Source: Image of light bulb, Public Domain, ; Image of student at desk, Public Domain, ; Image of computer and tablets, Public Domain,

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Welcome to a tutorial on Role of Teacher and Student in BYOD. In today's tutorial, we will discuss what is the role of the teacher in a BYOD-- remember, bring your own device-- learning environment. What is the role of the student in a BYOD learning environment? And how does a traditional learning environment differ from a BYOD learning environment?

Let's start by talking about what the teacher's role is in a BYOD, or bring your own device, classroom. This teacher must shift focus to a more student centered learning environment. The BYOD teacher must also make sure that foundational skills, problem solving, and high order thinking skills are apparent in the classroom as these are essential to this type of classroom.

Remember, BYOD is where each student brings their own device to the classroom. So what do teachers do in the BYOD classroom? Well, teachers are the coach, the tutor. They encourage and celebrate students' learning.

This might mean having access to a class website at the start of class. And each student accessing this website from the device that they brought from home. Maybe teachers use this website as a tool for checking in with the students.

The BYOD teacher also facilitates deep learning, discussion, and collaboration. This teacher might use Google documents to collaborate online, so each student uses their device to access their Google docs. This teacher designs problem based opportunities for the extension of learning. This might look like having students generate questions that they really want to research and adding these questions to a class discussion board.

A BYOD teacher also instructs content and foundational skills using various classroom methods for instruction. They analyze student data to make instructional decisions. BYOD teachers might use online programs that each student can access from their own device, programs that provide immediate scores and feedback for the teacher to make those decisions instructionally.

BYOD teachers coordinate cooperative grouping. Discussion boards and blogs are useful tools that each student, on their own separate device, can access. With this, one device must be used per group. So at least one device must be brought from a student in the group.

The BYOD teacher needs to differentiate in the classroom. These teachers are able to assign various resources to use for learning the material, or maybe they consider the separate devices that each student are bringing and assign material according to each type of device. The role of this teacher is to personalize. The teacher is able to tailor levels for each student based on their needs.

The BYOD teacher assesses and provides actionable feedback using websites like Edmodo, for students and teachers to collect data together, discuss, and connect. Remember that all teachers in this environment focus on foundational skills, high order thinking skills, and problem solving opportunities. The time in the classroom that is teacher centered and lecture based activities are decreased significantly in the BYOD classroom.

So what does a student do in that BYOD classroom? Well, in a BYOD classroom students move at their own pace. They increase self-initiation and ownership of their learning, collaborate, are active participants, problem solvers, and creators. And they are much more engaged than the traditional learning environment most likely. It's important to note that the degree to which these roles are possible might vary with the number of students that have devices and the frequency that those devices are available.

So how is a BYOD classroom different than a traditional classroom? In a traditional classroom, or in traditional learning, those immediate shifts in instruction are delayed. The lack of ability to assess data real-time makes it hard for teachers to make those immediate shifts. But in a BYOD classroom, students have access to devices that they're bringing in. And they can use websites and tools that give teachers that immediate data, so that they can make those shifts in students' learning.

The teacher in traditional learning is the only source of content knowledge. Where in BYOD, or bring your own device, learning the students have access to content from all different types of resources.

In a traditional classroom, the available resources, or lack thereof, can cause restrictions. In a traditional classroom, there's less flexibility in the design of the material. Whereas in BYOD and one-on-one environments, teachers have much more flexibility in the tools that they can use to present material.

In traditional classrooms, fewer opportunities for support with online platforms are available.

So let's take a moment to reflect. How can we apply these ideas? Think about the questions, what are the challenges in moving to a BYOD learning environment from a traditional learning environment? Who can you collaborate with to find resources to support those student teacher roles and what they look like in a BYOD environment, especially if you're a teacher that has not experienced this type of environment before?

Let's talk about what we learned today. What is the role of the teacher in a BYOD learning environment? What is the role of the student in a BYOD learning environment? And how does a traditional learning environment differ from a BYOD learning environment?

Remember, the BYOD learning environment is where each student brings their own device into class. The role of the teacher is to become that facilitator and encourage the active learning, inquiry, collaboration, and communication. They're also there for support and to be a coach.

The role of the student, then, transforms into owning their own learning and becoming an active participant with communicating, collaborating, researching, and inquiring into information that they're curious about.

Thanks for joining me today to talk about the role of the teacher and the student in the BYOD learning environment. I hope you're able to use these tools and these ideas in your own classroom. To dive a little deeper and learn how to apply this information, be sure to check out the Additional Resources section associated with this video. This is where you'll find links targeted toward helping you discover more ways to apply this course material.

Notes on "Role of Teacher and Student in BYOD"


(00:00- 00:24) Introduction/objectives

(00:25- 03:18) Role of the Teacher in BYOD environments

(03:19- 03:50) Role of the Student in BYOD environments

(03:51- 04:56) Traditional Learning roles vs. BYOD Roles

(04:57- 05:24) Reflection/application questions

(05:25- 06:31) Review 

Additional Resources

BYOD Teacher Management Tips

This sheet from the Edina, MN School District offers useful strategies for teachers transitioning to a BYOD environment. There are strategies for getting started, classroom management, and iPad/ tablet environments.