Kerryn Boogaard Kerryn Boogaard
Beverly Goldsmith Beverly Goldsmith
Zoe Bingley-Pullin Zoe Bingley-Pullin

New website to help with back-to-school technology decisions:

New research reveals that Aussie households are potentially wasting billions on devices that aren’t maximising their child’s potential in the classroom.
By Motherpedia
Date: January 22 2015
Editor Rating:
students-computers

A new interactive website to help parents and students choose the right device for school has been launched by Microsoft Australia and Intel to help get through the technology maze.

The website, known as www.devicesforschool.com.au, is in response to research that showed parents are mostly in the dark on the best technology to purchase for their school-aged children, with half of parents surveyed stating that schools provide little guidance on what device to buy.

The study by Microsoft revealed that 75% of parents are spending up to $1,000 on devices, and more than half are willing to replace these devices every two to three years. With a quarter of parents admitting to buying the wrong device for their child at some point, families are potentially wasting billions of dollars on the wrong devices for children over their school life.

The findings also show 70% of parents want to relinquish their decision making power when it comes to choosing devices, calling out for a range of appropriate devices to be recommended to them.

Further findings from the research include:

  • 35% of parents let their child decide which device to buy because they know which one will be best for their needs;
  • 1 in 5 high school students are stuck with a device that doesn’t do what they need it to; 
  • Nearly half of parents are willing to spend $300-$700 with 1 in 4 expecting to spend up to $1000; and
  • A little over 1 in 10 parents (13%) said that schools specify what device they should buy.

Pip Cleaves, parent, former teacher and Senior Education Consultant at Design, Learn, Empower, believes technology innovation in schools can be incredibly beneficial but the wrong devices can hinder a student’s growth and development.

“In this day and age, technology is now firmly integrated within Australian classrooms, and having the right technology is critical in enabling students to keep up with the curriculum being taught. However, it’s also critical that each device is fully compatible and the student can access specific programs, otherwise they risk falling behind the rest of the class,” said Cleaves.

The aim of devicesforschool.com.au is to help guide parents on the best option for their child, based on the level of schooling, and also to reduce parental stress and costs.

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