Student Technology Laptop Requirement
Our education students have been using Macintosh laptops in their field placements and coursework for many years. In 2008, our program implemented a Mac laptop requirement for all incoming first-years seeking teacher certification. Our years of experience have proven to us that, by removing access as a barrier, this laptop initiative has allowed us to eliminate the hurdles we once had to address with multiple platforms, and multiple versions of software. It has streamlined the process of applying technology theory to technology practice. A unique quality of our program is the multiple field-experiences, with which we provide our pre-service teachers. During their education courses, we ask that students develop technology-enriched lessons, and bring these with them into the classroom to use with the students they are teaching. During our most recent program review by the Department of Public Instruction, our laptop requirement was highlighted as one of our strengths.
Research shows that access to technology raises student engagement and achievement. Laptop computers have changed the way many professors teach. They invite students to immediately access research and information as questions and interests arise during the class and beyond, allowing all students to participate simultaneously in their learning.
The teacher education discipline at St. Norbert historically has embraced the important role that technology has in the classroom. Over the years, students have been leaders in developing multimedia projects, using cutting-edge technologies and showcasing their work through electronic portfolios. Recent graduates have commented how this is a unique quality of our education program, and has, in some cases, helped them secure their first job.
We believe that one-to-one mobile computing will offer our students the 24/7 access to technology they need in order to be the most effective teachers possible.