Personal Digital Devices Should Be Allowed In School


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Using digital devices in school or classroom is “inevitable” and so BYOD is preferable to the “lockdown” approach adopted by some schools — particularly in relation to mobile phones (Stavert, 2013).

Opportunity to use their own devise leads to increase engagement, motivation and initiation by students and they invest into their learning as it is the significant part of their life and use of it in school allows it to be integral to their learning lives as well.

It provides more personalized student-centered learning approach (Mellar, 2015 ) which allows students to have power over their own learning and become responsible for their own learning.

Allowing use of personal devices in school also extends the learning opportunity beyond the classroom and allows seamless learning opportunities that bridge the formal learning in schools with the informal learning outside of classroom and school.

At this point it is important to highlight that allowing students to use their own device provides opportunities for them to be part of the online world and get exposed to the many pitfalls of the online world.

For this reason students need to learn not only to keep themselves safe but to behave ethically as well. To address this issue, framework for digital citizenship is adopted by NSW DET which makes it imperative that teachers guide and prepare their students to be digital citizens. Another issue could be that some students get easily distracted and may use their device for applications other than learning such as social media sites. In such cases, it is important for the teacher to consider these issues during lesson planning so that they prepare lessons and use pedagogies that caters for the needs of all students and keeps them engaged throughout the lesson providing no opportunity for distraction.

Having said this, I believe that schools should be focusing on promoting responsible use of these devices, rather than banning them.

“You can’t stop students using the powerful computers in their pockets.”


DEC NSW (2011). Digital Citizenship                                                                                

Meller B. (2015). BYOD is shaping Education in the 21st Century     

Stavert B. (2013), Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) in Schools, 2013 Literature Review



2 thoughts on “Personal Digital Devices Should Be Allowed In School

  1. Ashton says:

    Hi Ashmita,

    Nice blog post, you obviously have a firm belief in what you have written. I agree, it is becoming almost impossible to ban mobile phone use in schools. You have identified what is probably the most significant reason for schools to ban mobiles – the use of social media, SMS or other non-school related applications when students are supposed to be learning.

    When I was at school (about 5 years ago), the mobile phone was banned. I can remember having my flip phone in my bag in class, and bringing it out at lunch time. This didn’t phase me too much, as its only capability was to message the people who were already in the room with me. Nowadays, scrolling through Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and other social networking sites have become second nature to students. I find myself often being distracted by these things, so I can only imagine that students are the same. That is the reason for my thought that perhaps mobiles be allowed on occasion with permission from the teacher (e.g. at lunch time, in Visual Arts class to use Pinterest or other relevant app, etc.). It is certainly harder to track students who are off task on mobiles, as they often have their own, unfiltered connection to the internet.

    Cheers, Ashton.


    • ashnand says:

      Hi Ashton,
      Thanks for your comment.
      I agree with you that mobile phones does cause distraction and students do get off tracks. On the Parent/teacher day, the teacher of my 12yr old told me that he gets distracted easily in the class- HOW?? Him and his friends go online and play games on their devices (you know those multi-player ones). The teacher caught them on multiple occasion so they were given detention and the rule of the class is to keep mobile phone (silent mode)and other smart devices in your bag unless or until told by the teacher to use it for the purpose of the lesson. So yes, it should be used only under the discretion of the teacher and only for that duration otherwise be kept in bag on silent mode.



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