What is Bring Your Own Device (BYOD)?

BYOD, also referred to as BYOT (Bring Your Own Technology), is the practice of people bringing their own laptops, tablets, smartphones, or other portable devices with them to the learning or work environment. Intel coined the term in 2009, when the company observed that an increasing number of its employees were using their own devices and connecting them to the corporate network, leading to major productivity gains. As of 2015, millennials became the largest generation represented in the US workforce, and as group generally accustomed to mobiles being at the center of their lives, there is now an expectation that they can use them for many aspects of their work life. In formal education, the BYOD movement addresses the same reality; many students are entering the classroom with their own devices, which they use to connect to the institutions’ networks. While BYOD policies have been shown to reduce overall technology spending, they are gaining traction more so because they reflect the contemporary lifestyle and way of working and learning. Even in the absence of concrete strategies, institutions across the world are increasingly accommodating and even encouraging the use of mobile devices for a wide range of teaching and learning activities.

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(1) How might this technology be relevant to the educational sector you know best?

  • BYOT can allow agents and clients in the field to use otherwise cost prohibitive technology through apps to make their job more effective - dgeller dgeller May 3, 2016
  • BYOT for teaching and learning activities can keep clients engaged who may already be using their technology in the learning or working environment for personal reasons. - brittany.coop brittany.coop May 4, 2016
  • This is pretty much the current way we operate now. It is common/expected practice that people will show up at our classes, workshops, etc. with their smartphone, ipad, tablet... - mpeabody mpeabody May 13, 2016

(2) What themes are missing from the above description that you think are important?

  • While there is a focus on the classroom here, I feel like if we really want to take advantage of this concept in Extension we need to expand it to the field - dgeller dgeller May 3, 2016
  • The problem of incompatible platforms needs to be addressed. If you have 20 people show up with their own devices there are always problems with apps that don't work on some percentage of the devices. Connectivity continues to be an issue in many regions. Security when sharing data, apps, etc. is a concern as well. - mpeabody mpeabody May 13, 2016
  • Security concerns are probably the most important theme from an IT perspective. IT will want complete control over devices connected to the network especially those devices that have access to sensitive information. A user should think carefully about the level of control that IT has over one's devices. - wolforkt wolforkt May 29, 2016

(3) What do you see as the potential impact of this technology on higher education?

  • Productivity, both within the classroom/field and outside of it could be increased by utilizing BYOT. - brittany.coop brittany.coop May 4, 2016
  • Passes the cost of the technology on to the end user--not sure if that's good or bad but it will have implications for who participates and who doesn't.- mpeabody mpeabody May 13, 2016
  • Lower cost for an IT department as related to hardware, but more cost related to IT as related to personnel to support the various versions of Android, Samsung Tizen, IOS, etc. - wolforkt wolforkt May 29, 2016

(4) Do you have or know of a project working in this area?

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