The key to BYOT is choice… allowing students to access tools, evaluate their usage for the learning need and use the tool successfully.
Funny thing about choice...
I've been in correspondence with ed tech colleagues throughout the US. Many of them chose one device for their 1:1 initiatives... often citing the ease of selecting productivity tools when working with a single platform. The device makes the choice for you: Office for Windows, iWorks for Mac, Pages App for iPad.... I can honestly say, 8 days in to BYOT, that yes - it is easier to narrow the field of productivity tools in a single platform environment. So far we've lived the cross-platform challenges of:
- The textbook works on Windows and various predatory cat species of Mac OS. Not iPad or Android, contrary to publisher assurances (@jdferries has set the dogs of war on them)
- You really can't upload a document to Blackboard Engage (formerly Edline) from an iPad. To be fair, you can't upload any document off an iPad because the files structure is unreachable unless you perform an illegal maneuver which we do not advocate.
- Another textbook came with a CD-ROM of supplemental material which runs only on OS 10.4 or EARLIER
- MLA format is still biased to MS Word (see related mention to Office bias by guest blogger Layton Elliot over at Confessions of a Jesuit School CIO)
After all, it's about the verbs not the nouns. In our case access, evaluate, use...