iPad Mini

Tech GEARS Overall Score
1.9 out of 4 stars
University of Idaho
Screenshot for iPad Mini

iPad Minis are a reduced-size version of the iPad, which is the most popular tablet computing device on the market.  Like other Apple products, iPad Minis run the iOS operating system and has the ability to download and run a variety of applications from the Apple App Store.

iPad Minis are very popular in consumer markets for their size, portability, flexibility, and ease of use, and many in education are drawn to such products for their solid design and aesthetics.  Cost, durability, and management, however, are major factors that limit iPad Mini deployments at any scale and impede sustainable models of educational implementation.

Tech GEARS Area Scores

Technology General Educational Application Rating System (Tech GEARS) Area Scores
CriterionRatingDescription
Compatibility CM The technology is generally compatible with existing infrastructure and practices, but care should be taken to ensure that implementation addresses problem areas.
Relative Advantage RA The technology has some promise for improving efficiencies or transforming educational practice for the better, but care will need to be taken in establishing expected outcomes and evaluating impact.
Sustainability ST The technology is generally sustainable over a reasonable length of time, but steps should be taken to address problem areas and to protect the technology against damage or failure.
Scalability SC The technology is capable of scaling beyond the classroom level, but care should be taken to address problem areas and to create supports for diffusion.

Tech GEARS Detailed Item Analysis

Tech GEARS Detailed Item Analysis
CriterionRatingDescription
Accessibility The technology's design prevents some individuals from being able to effectively use it, but add-on features can be utilized or adjustments may be made to compensate for this lack of accessibility.
Classroom-Friendliness The technology might work well in existing K-12 classroom cultures with minor cultural adjustments.
Cost - Initial The technology costs significantly more than other brands of the same type of product.
Efficiency It is unlikely that the technology will improve efficiencies.
Flexibility The technology is flexible for a variety of purposes.
Infrastructural Compatibility The technology will function within existing infrastructures, but will require significant leniency, adjustments, or autonomy to do so.
Lifespan The technology would be expected to last between two and three (2-3) years in a typical K-12 classroom setting wherein it was used daily.
Management Ease It would take a tech-savvy classroom teacher to effectively manage this technology.
Measurable Outcomes The technology cannot readily be connected to any measurable student outcomes.
Management Scale A single administrator must manage technology users individually to be effective.
Security With significant effort, the technology can be made to comply with FERPA and other privacy requirements and to utilize industry standards of information security.
Tranformational Value It is somewhat likely that the technology will transform school or classroom cultures in valuable ways.
User-Friendliness The technology is easy to use and has little (if any) learning curve.
Zeitgeist The technology is of great interest to the larger culture (as evidenced in widespread adoption, media coverage, etc.).
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