8 Using the Technology Consistently

It can be tempting — particularly if you’re using a resource you did not select for yourself — to try it for one or two activities near the beginning of the term and then put it on a shelf. Even for something you find exciting, it can be tempting to use it sparingly as a test case and then move on to other things.  There are a lot of good reasons for making that sort of choice, but it’s a very good way to sabotage the success of your implementation.

Starting slowly isn’t a bad thing, but adopting a tool piecemeal or for a single activity is not a good way to get the most out of it — or to truly test its usefulness.  Instead, plan to use the tool multiple times throughout the term. It will benefit both your students and your later evaluation if you use the tool in consistent ways for consistent types of assignments or activities.  By the second or third occurrence, you and your students will all be familiar with the tool and will have the opportunity to experience its benefits without the added cognitive load of using it for the first time.

It is, of course, entirely possible that the technology is so ineffectual or disruptive that you simply cannot persist in using it. In those rare cases where the technology is not simply a poor fit, but is an impossible blocker to learning, you will benefit from having done a little disaster-planning (see “Disaster-Proofing”) and having an alternative format or assignment ready to go.

Research supporting this section. 


The Change Management Guide to Incorporating Educational Technology Copyright © by Sherry Mooney. All Rights Reserved.

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