Teaching Strategies

Technology in the Classroom

Sample #1

You are welcome to use a laptop or tablet in this class as long as it contributes to your learning. This class, once again, is discussion based. This means that all students are expected to actively listen to one another in order to participate in classroom activities. If you are unable to contribute to the discussion or are otherwise distracted by your computer, cell phone, or tablet, I will ask that you refrain from using it in class. There will be some class sessions where we will use technology together, and in those instances, all students should make arrangements to bring a laptop or tablet to class. If you have any questions or concerns, please be in touch with me. (University of Chicago syllabus)

Sample #2

You may use laptops or tablets in this class to consult online readings or to take notes. However,any other use of these devices and the use of cell phones is strictly prohibited. Place your phone on mute before you come to class. Violating this policy will negatively impact your participation grade. (University of Pennsylvania)

Sample #3

Access to the Internet can be a valuable aid to the classroom learning environment. You may be encouraged to use a laptop, smart phone, or other device to explore concepts related to course discussions and in-class activity. Keep in mind, however, that these technologies can be distracting – not only for you, but to others in the class. Please avoid the temptation of Facebook, texting, or other off-topic diversions.(University of Denver)

Sample #4

I know many of you read online or take notes on your laptops or tablets, however, electronics are a major distraction in class and disrupt class discussion. There is literature that supports this claim, one of which includes: Fried, C.B. (2008). In-class laptop use and its effects on student learning. Computers & Education, 50(3), 906-914. But, because we often read online, I will allow them. However, if I find they become distracting, I hold the right to disallow them in class.

In this vein, I would strongly suggest you print out the PDF and online readings, and bring your books to class. I would also urge you to come to class with written notes on the readings or typed notes on your laptop or tablet. If printing is an issue, please talk to me! (Brown University course on “Racial and Ethnic Politics and Policy in America,” taught by Yalidy Matos)

Sample #5

A note on cell phones, texting, and checking one’s email during class: Research has shown us that even having our cell phones on the table in front of us diminishes our ability to learn well; further, taking notes via computer diminishes one’s ability to process information. Checking texts, emails, and messages is also unprofessional and disrespectful to our class community. Please turn o your phone, email, and computer during class; I will do so as well. I appreciate your cooperation with this important aspect of creating a class of which we all want to be a part. (Yale University)