Tablets have arrived. According to Focus.com, 208 million tablets will be sold in 2014, and by 2015, tablets will account for 23 percent of the global personal computer market.
The growth is having a major impact on business, healthcare, finance and higher education. Students’ use of tablets is increasing at a significant rate, as noted by .eduGuru:
Tablets are being adopted at an impressive rate, and tablet purchases are expected to outpace smartphone purchases over the next two years. Tablet ownership among college students has correspondingly skyrocketed and a Pearson Foundation survey found that it has tripled from a year ago. One-quarter of college students currently own a tablet.
Considering that no one owned a tablet just a few years ago, the move by college students offers a glimpse into the future. Here are five reasons why tablets will change higher education in the next five years:
- Textbooks. This is low-hanging fruit. No college student likes dropping more than $1,000 per year on textbooks. A tablet costs significantly less than a year’s worth of books, and electronic books could save students as much as 80 percent, according to Amazon. This will be the first, and perhaps most important, effect on higher education.
- Engagement. How do you keep college students interested in their coursework? Make it fun. According to the Pearson Foundation, 78 percent of college students believe that tablets make learning more fun. If students indicate a preferred method of learning, administrators and professors would do well to pay attention.
- Collaboration. Because they are mobile but still powerful computing devices, tablets are the perfect tool for collaboration. The ability to send files back and forth, edit a presentation in the dining hall, download study materials and watch recorded lectures in a coffee shop is appealing to busy, social students.
- Social networking. It isn’t going away, and tablets provide the hardware for connecting today’s college students. Almost 9 out of 10 college students think that tablets are valuable for both education (86 percent) and personal entertainment (88 percent), according to the Pearson Foundation. It’s the perfect storm for students who want to save money on books, engage in the classroom and connect with friends.
- Change is needed. The current standard of higher education is too expensive to maintain. Tablets aren’t the sole solution, but they prove that technology has the ability to change the model.
Is your school adopting tablets? We’d love to hear practical examples of tablets in the classroom and on campus! Comment below.