East Berkshire College is the latest further education institution to champion the deployment of the Surface Pro 3 amongst their population of students and teachers alike.
With 8,000 students, the college aims to improve high quality technology resources in order to give students the flexibility and versatility to work effectively outside of the classroom. This is made possible through the Surface Pro 3, by combining of the portability and compactness of a tablet with the functionality of a laptop, making it easy to place into their existing routines. Although, it is the programs and apps that are available on the device that makes the learning experience through the Surface Pro 3 unique and hugely effective.
As part of their deployment of Surface Pro 3, East Berkshire also use OneDrive, which makes learning and access to resources accessible for all. By saving all work and resources on the Microsoft cloud service that is OneDrive, students and teachers can access all their documents and files wherever they are at any time. So for teachers, they no longer have to tolerate the excuse of students 'losing' a piece of coursework the day before the deadline!
What's more, the teachers have found the deployment of Office 365 a huge asset to their teaching and learning. This is used in a range of subjects across the curriculum and one Office 365 app that is versatile across the curriculum is OneNote. Moreover, the Surface Pro 3 comes with a clickable pen, allowing students to handwrite their own notes straight into OneNote instead of typing them. With recent findings indicating the benefits of handwriting notes vs typing, the ability to use a smooth and responsive pen with a tablet is a huge advantage. Similarly, with the pen, you can take screen clippings that can be saved directly into your OneNote. This allows students to save useful content, react quickly and engage more.
As a teacher this tool is useful, and Head of Teaching and Learning for Maths and English, Suzanne Plaister agrees. She said that when walking around the classroom she'll hear loads of great ideas, but when it comes to feeding back to the class she finds that ideas can be lost in translation - the solution to this is that students can share OneNote files and record their own thoughts and comment on other people's views and opinions as they happen during group discussions. As a whole this shows that the use of apps such as OneNote (which is free with Office 365) truly enhances students learning.
East Berkshire College have also adopted a unique feature which is the Surface pro cabinets so students have easy access to the devices; all they have to do is swipe their student cards to unlock the cabinets. Safe, secure and easy.
The use of Surface Pro 3 develops technologically confident students and supplies them with the essential skills they need in a working environment. This is perhaps best summed up by East Berkshire College's Director of the curriculum Clive Hodge:
'With Microsoft you get the whole package, everything we need to make sure we have students who are well rounded and technologically savvy and are ready for 21st century work, business and employment.'
Surface 3 is available at a 10% discount for education. For device specification and to find an authorised reseller please visit Surface in education.
Office 365 is available for free to all students and staff at no cost as part of their schools’ existing Microsoft Education subscription. For more information and to check eligibility, please visit Office.com/GetOffice365.