The Future of Education

Edition 14

Accepted Abstracts

Students' perspectives on learning with tablets – A case study of a Norwegian municipality

Siw Olsen Fjørtoft, SINTEF Digital (Norway)


Digital technology has undeniably become more important in children's and young people's school life. In just a few years, the coverage rate of digital equipment has become very high, and 1:1 classroom is the new norm from elementary to high school. This study is part of a larger research project that has evaluated the use of 1:1 in a medium-sized Norwegian municipality. The paper's focus is students' perspectives on learning with tablets and is based on focus group interviews with students from different grade levels.

The students see both advantages and disadvantages of receiving personal tablets from school. Some challenges are due to the tablet itself, while others are related to 1:1 issues in general. What is positive about tablets is, among other things, usability and a handy format that is easy to bring outside the classroom. The use of touch screens is also something most students are familiar with. Tablets make tasks like photography and filming easier than with a PC.

The main disadvantage of tablets is that they are not very suitable for writing longer texts — which is especially relevant for older students. In addition, the app version of familiar tools such as Word and Excel does not work as well on tablets as on a PC. There are also general challenges with students always having access to their own devices: many play games, watch YouTube, and do other things unrelated to school activities.

The students in this study have three years of experience with 1:1 tablets, and their perspectives are useful for further research and practice development within the field of ICT in K-12 education.


Keywords: Learning technologies, tablets, 1:1 classroom, K-12.



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