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1. One-to-one (1:1)
Most commonly refers to a program where a school provides one device (e.g.
laptop, tablet, etc) per student. This is a new initiative and a lot of conflicting
reports exist citing its advantages and disadvantages. Many K-12 schools are
currently running 1:1 pilots to test this concept.
For example: Andy's school gave him an iPad to use for the entire school year as
part of their 1:1 iPad program.
2. Adaptive Learning
An educational process where the teaching methods and materials adapt to each
students' pace and level. Technology is often the vehicle for delivering this
process, since software can change exercises, questions, and content easily
based on previous answers and actions by a student.
For example: Jack is doing well with geometry, but getting a lot of algebra
questions wrong. So the app he is using increases the difficulty of the geometry
questions while presenting easier algebra questions to help him along.
3. Assistive Technology
Any piece of technology, hardware or software, that helps a person with
disabilities perform everyday tasks that might otherwise be difficult or impossible.
This can include everything from wheelchairs to screen readers to text
For example: Isabella is hearing impaired and turns on the captions of
instructional YouTube videos to understand what is being said.
4. Augmentative & Alternative Communication (AAC)
Any communication method that helps individuals with speech and language
impairments to communicate. AAC technologies are a sub-category of assistive
For example: Vedant has a speech impediment and uses AAC iPad apps to
communicate. In these apps, he taps on pictures of words he wants to say, and
the app says the words out loud.
5. Big Data
A collection of data sets so large that specialized technologies, techniques, and
technicians are required to process, manage, and store them. An industry has
arisen around the processing and analysis of large volumes of student data.
For example: This is a bit of a catch-all buzz term that isn't always used properly
and consistently, but you can simply think of it as "lots of information combined
with technologies that can give you useful insights."

6. Blended Learning
A teaching practice that combines, or blends, classroom and online learning. The
instruction of a lesson occurs with both teacher interaction and computing
devices. Also known as Hybrid Learning.

For example: Matias learns about algebra is from his teacher, then goes to the
computer lab to practice algebra questions using a math program.
7. Bring Your Own Device (BYOD)
Also known as Bring Your Own Technology (BYOT), this is an initiative where
students bring their own mobile devices into the classroom for class purposes, as
opposed to using school-issued devices. This is often seen as an alternative to 1:1
programs due to lower maintenance costs, though students without devices
cannot participate.
For example: Li Ting brings her Android phone to class everyday for use as a
clicker because of her school's BYOD program.
8. Classroom technology
This is the loose term used to describe both hardware and software that is used in
the classroom with the aim of improving performance and assessments of
students. It has come to describe the recent changes in networked (both fixed
and cloud-based) digital devices that are increasingly being used in education.
9. Clickers
A device or mobile app that allows students to answer a multiple-choice question.
The teacher presents a question to the class, then students use their clickers to
input their answer. Some use this as an alternative to paper quizzes.
For example: Mr. Shah asked his class a question and Pedro answered by pressing
the "A" button on his clicker device.
10. Cloud
A generic term used to represent the concept of distributed computing - where a
set of networked computers allow for shared services. Also used synonymously
with the Internet.
For example: This is a buzzword that is often used improperly and inconsistently.
You can simply think of it as another word for the public Internet.
11. Cloud Computing
Another generic term that refers to the computer hardware and software that
powers the cloud. This includes servers (a computer with specialized software on
it), data storage, applications, and more.
For example: This is another buzzword that is often used improperly and
inconsistently. You can simply think of it as "a huge collection of computers
around the world that allow me to do all the cool things that I can do on the

12. Digital Classroom

A classroom that mostly or entirely relies on electronic devices and software
instead of paper and pens. It is usually characterized by a central computing
device, like a laptop or tablet, and a number of online software and apps.
For example: Justin uses a Google Chromebook for all of his lessons and
homework because his teacher set up a paperless, digital classroom.
13. Digital Native

An individual born during or after the common use of digital technologies, such as
the Internet, mobile devices, apps, etc. It is assumed that such individuals have a
strong grasp of digital technology because it was a regular part of their lives.
For example: Robin was born in 2008 and is a digital native because she has been
playing with her parents' iPad since she was a toddler.
14. Education Technology
Any kind of technology that is used for educational purposes by an educator or
educational institution. Most commonly used in reference to software utilized in
primary, secondary, and higher education, though it can cover much more than
For example: Camille is playing with an educational phonics game on her iPad.
The company that makes this game is an edtech company.
15. Educational apps
Educational software that is made most usually for mobile devices and appenabled operating systems such as Apple iOS and Windows 8. These applications
are usually curated and made available via an app store such as Apple App store
or Google Play.
16. Flipped Classroom
A form of blended learning, this is the practice of students watching lecture
material (usually in video form) at home, then practicing their learnings in an
interactive environment in the classroom. Households without computers or an
Internet connection cannot participate in this practice, however.
For example: Chloe watched several calculus videos at home, then came to class
and worked on calculus questions. When she got stuck, she asked her teacher for
17. Gamification
The practice of applying game mechanics into an activity. Examples of game
mechanics are goals, badges, competition, immediate feedback, and leveling up.
For example: Mrs. McSweeney gamified her classroom by awarding badges for
good behavior.

18. Individual Education Program (IEP)

A comprehensive and personalized plan that helps a child with disabilities achieve
a specific set of education goals. Parents, teachers, and school specialists work
together to construct and carry out this plan.
For example: Tyler's parents, special education teacher, psychologist, speech
therapist, and school district representative are all meeting right now to review
his progress, update his IEP, and set his goals for next week.
19. Instructional Technology
A subset of education technology, this practice focuses more on the use of
technology for instructional purposes, though the terms are sometimes used

For example: Mr. Garcia designs and builds courseware tools in his role as an
instructional technologist, while Mrs. Singh designs and builds lesson plans,
sometimes incorporating technology in her role as an educational technologist.
20. ISTE
International Society for Technology in Education is a non profit aimed at
promoting connected learning and technology for the classroom. It holds a yearly
international conference and expo in the US.
21. Information & Communications Technology (ICT)
A field related to Information Technology (IT). Used by some as synonymous with
IT, and by others as more expansive than IT, since it includes communication
technologies as well. In the US, IT is more commonly used within schools, while
ICT is more common in the UK.
For example: Miss Leung is the school ICT coordinator and can help you with your
classroom wifi connection.
22. Learning Management System (LMS)
A piece of software that manages, analyzes, and runs educational courses and
training programs. Also included are student registration, curriculum
management, skill & competency management, and reporting features. Most
modern LMS packages are web-based.
For example: Ms. Kensington is deciding between Moodle, Blackboard,
Desire2Learn, and Schoology for managing her teachers' curriculum materials
and students' assessments.
23. Massive Open Online Course (MOOC)
An online course that includes video lectures, reading materials, problem sets,
and a student community. Supporters see MOOCs as a disruptive innovation and
detractors question its actual educational efficacy.
For example: Madison has been taking a computer programming MOOC with
Coursera at night with the hopes of changing careers one day.

24. Math Manipulatives

An object that can be moved around as an aid for understanding a mathematical
concept. Sometimes handling a real-world object can help students learn an
abstract concept like addition and multiplication.
For example: Dmitriy is learning about area and volume with a set of balls and a
measuring cup.
25. Mobile learning
This using describes the process of interactive learning through various types of
mobile technologies, most often mobile phones or network-enabled tablets.
26. Open Educational Resource (OER)
Any online educational material that is freely accessible and openly licensed for
public consumption. Such materials can be online courses, lectures, homework
assignments, exercises, quizzes, interactive simulations, games, etc.

For example: Mrs. Sekibo is putting together her lesson plan by searching the web
for OER materials she can include.
27. Open Source Software
Any piece of software that is freely available and openly licensed. Other
programmers can contribute to the original software or create their own versions
of it. Most modern websites incorporate some kind of open source software.
For example: Being a starving student, Jorge uses free open source software to
run his blog. He sometimes writes new code and gives it back to the original blog
programmers too.
28. Operating System
This is the software that manages computer hardware. Traditionally this was
hardware that you physically held but with the onset of cloud-based services, the
operating system (OS) can manage remote devices where you access these
through a web interface. An example of an Operating System (OS) is Windows 8
or Android Jelly Bean for both PC's and Tablets.
29. Personal Learning Network (PLN)
An informal network of people that is professional in nature and meant to aid an
educator in furthering his/her pedagogical craft. Since teaching in a classroom
doesn't lend itself to a lot of peer interaction, teachers create PLNs to meet other
teachers for advice and support.
For example: Mr. Wayne grows his PLN through social media sites like Twitter and
30. Project Based Learning (PBL)
A teaching method based on the idea of "learning by doing." Students work on a
hands-on real-world activity that demonstrates the concepts they are learning.
PBL learning tends to have high student engagement.
For example: Anika is putting together an experiment using toy cars for her
physics project on inertia.