When buying new educational technology, educators should first decide which is best for their students. While it may be tempting to buy everything at once, this approach isn’t always the best solution. Rather, educators should evaluate how the technology will benefit the students and determine whether they will be able to use it after school. If the technology isn’t necessary, teachers should be involved in the decision-making process. Teachers are the experts on what students need and what they can do with it. A teacher who is recognized as a partner in the decision-making process will be more inclined to support it.
When it comes to purchasing new technology, educators should look for a partnership that will help them get the most out of the investment. Developers and researchers each have different methods of selling their products. In a recent edWebinar, representatives of a large school district and a small district discussed how they make decisions about which educational technologies are the best fit for their students. While this process is still in its early stages, the benefits can be significant.
One way to evaluate a new program is to sign up for a LEAP Innovations program. This program allows educators to try out various programs and select one they think would be best for their students. The company provides the educators with a free license of the chosen product, which they use to test the program for one year. Then, they share their experiences with it, and 80 percent of the time, they choose to keep the software or technology.
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