COWPads: iPads as shared devices

Schedule info

Time slot: 

Friday 3 October 11:30 am - 12:00 pm


Meeting Room 9


  • Innovative Learning


During 2013, a group of three teachers (French, mathematics, music), undertook a pilot project to find out how iPads could be used cross-curricularly as a class set. This presentation outlines some of the challenges the school faced in changing a personal device to shared one across three subjects, and housed in a COW (Computers on Wheels storage and charging device). It also outlines their solutions, the effect on the project when the school received ultrafast broadband capability halfway through the year, and where this has led the school since the timeframe of the small project was concluded. The project was a collaboration between the school and the university researcher, who became the ‘critical friend’, allowing the participants to review their experiments, their pedagogical thinking and design, and the technological hurdles they needed to jump. In essence, this critical friend role links to an appreciative inquiry framework designed in relation to action inquiry, by suggesting potential benefits arising from the issues and challenges the school faced in doing something communal with a personal device (the iPad) and meeting the unexpected. The research supported the examination of pedagogical practices alongside any observable impacts on learning (for both teachers and students) when the iPads were used. This presentation is companion to one that a key teacher involved in the project will present.

Session Info


  • Refereed Paper


  • Secondary School
  • Tertiary Level