Apple has had a long history of pushing its computers into the classrooms. For many years, a child’s first exposure to a computer had been at school, and often that computer was an Apple. The company made a push back in the 1980s to get its PCs into the classroom, and even with the ascendancy of Microsoft and Windows in the personal computing market, schools have remained a stronghold for Apple.
The shift to mobile devices — first the iPods, then the iPhones, and now the iPads — has once again put Apple in the lead in the consumer market, and it’s interesting to think about how the company continues to be embraced by schools and to influence education.
Apple’s new CEO Tim Cook says iPads are “showing up everywhere” and that in schools they are “changing the way teachers teach and kids learn, and many educators agree with us.” He added that there is an iPad deployment program in every state.
The idea of a one-to-one classroom does mean that students have their own computing devices, ones they carry with them at all times, at school and at home.
Personalization in education (and education technology) could mean a technology that knows what you “like” (arguably, of course, that’s Facebook). It could mean one that knows your academic strengths and weaknesses — what you could or should be studying.