Minggu, 28 Maret 2010

Benefits of Windows Mobile: Education

Abstract
This paper presents the experience of educational institutions of various sizes around the globe that have addressed the challenges of improving student learning while managing their tight budget and complying with additional regulatory requirements by deploying solutions based on Windows Mobile® software. Each of these institutions created value by improving educational outcomes, making school administration more effective, or enhancing the learning experience.

June 2006





The information contained in this document represents the current view of Microsoft Corporation on the issues discussed as of the date of publication. Because Microsoft must respond to changing market conditions, it should not be interpreted to be a commitment on the part of Microsoft, and Microsoft cannot guarantee the accuracy of any information presented after the date of publication.
This white paper is for informational purposes only. MICROSOFT MAKES NO WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, IN THIS DOCUMENT.
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© 2006 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.
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All other trademarks are property of their respective owners.
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Contents

Executive Summary 3
Introduction 3
The Impact of Windows Mobile in Educational Institutions 4
Examples of Windows Mobile–based Solutions in Education 7
K-12 Improved Learning 7
Improved Administration Efficiency 8
Enhanced Student Relevance and Classroom Experience in Higher Education 11
Conclusion 15
About the Authors 16
Appendix—Customer Descriptions and Links to Case Studies 17

Executive Summary
Educational institutions face relentless pressure to manage costs and meet rising standards while delivering excellent student outcomes and an enriched learning experience. The enactment of the No Child Left Behind Act has made schools accountable for the educational progress of all students. Students are increasingly technology savvy, and their embracing of digital media and information is generating new expectations for how education should be delivered to them.
Classroom teaching and school administration have long relied on pencil and paper and manual processes. In order to enhance classroom learning and increase administrative productivity, many educational institutions are applying technology including Windows Mobile® software and Windows Mobile powered devices. Educators are experiencing the following benefits from mobile solutions:
• Improved student learning
• Increased productivity of school administrators
• An enhanced classroom experience
This white paper describes how various educational institutions have realized significant value by deploying Windows Mobile–based solutions. Each example includes an overview of the institution’s needs, the deployed solution, and the resulting benefits. An appendix describes the educational institutions profiled and links to case studies.
Introduction
The world of work has evolved beyond the confines of the office and now requires anytime, anywhere access to data, colleagues, customers, and suppliers. Independent market analyst IDC estimates that as many as 878 million workers worldwide, or approximately 27 percent of the work force, will be considered mobile workers by 2009.
The education sector faces similar mobility issues, which affect school administration as well as the educational process itself. At the same time, several education-specific trends continue to challenge educators and provide additional impetus for institutions to change how they operate:
• Increased regulation and accountability for education outcomes
• Continual budget pressure
• Keeping up with digitally sophisticated students
To address these issues, educational institutions are increasingly looking at information technology solutions. Windows Mobile–based solutions have been deployed successfully and are generating a return on investment, thanks to the manageable up-front costs of the devices, ease of integration with back-office systems, and security capabilities. Windows Mobile–based solutions are particularly useful in enabling the full potential of students and educators because they can be integrated seamlessly with the existing curriculum.
This white paper documents how Windows Mobile–based solutions are helping educational institutions to operate more productively and to serve their students more effectively.

The Impact of Windows Mobile in Educational Institutions


Since the No Child Left Behind Act became U.S. federal law in January 2002, standardized test scores in elementary school and high school graduation rates have gained an increasingly important place in the policies adopted by educational institutions. The federal law for the first time requires that high schools and school systems be held accountable in a meaningful way for graduation rates as well as for performance on academic assessments. To do so, schools must deliver effective educational materials in a way that enables students to learn successfully, and that is relevant today and will help them in the future. These requirements must be met within the usual tight budgetary environment. In fact, failure for a school to perform can mean reduced funding. In higher education, where students are consumers with a choice of where to spend their education dollars, institutions must ensure that their curriculum and classroom experience is meeting student expectations.
Technology has become an integral part of our lives. Students are becoming digitally savvy at younger ages. Schools are challenged to utilize technology to engage these digitally aware kids while fulfilling their mission of educating them and ensuring adherence to testing mandates.
Young people in the United States are becoming comfortable with technology at younger ages. According to the Pew Internet & American Life Project, 87 percent of U.S. youth aged 12 to 17 went online in 2005. This represents an increase of 24 percent since the previous Pew study, conducted in 2000. The biggest jump in online activity appears to occur in junior high school, when online activity jumps from 60 percent of youth in sixth grade to 82 percent of students in seventh grade (see Figure 2).
School-age children are very comfortable using portable media devices in their everyday life. They use devices for personal entertainment (such as music and video games), communication (such as a mobile phone), and connecting to the Internet, as well as devices such as handheld Internet device, portable computers, and PDAs. A Kaiser Family Foundation Study found that the majority of youths in the 8- to 18-year-old range own two or more media devices (see Figure 3). Young people have become very comfortable with being able to take their devices wherever they go. This has also fostered an expectation that access to media should be obtainable anytime and anywhere.
This digital generation is also the first to have grown up with interactive media. According to Lee Rainie, Director of the Pew Internet & American Life Project, today’s teens have an expectation that they should be able to interact with others in the creative process and critique their works. They want to manipulate, remix, and share content. Rainie states that some 57 percent of all teen Internet users have contributed a creation of theirs, such as artwork, photos, videos, audio files, or pieces of creative writing, to the online ”commons.” Their approach to research, which has been heavily influenced by their interaction with the Internet, is a self-directed and self-paced process, but also one that reaches out for advice and feedback.
Many educators are concerned over whether schools are keeping up with the needs and expectations of this digital generation. Data from the National Center for Education Statistics seems to indicate that high school students surveyed have a declining view of the value and relevance of school to them and their future needs (see Figure 4). The latest survey results from 2000 show that only 28 percent of twelfth graders believe that schoolwork is meaningful and only 21 percent agree that their courses are interesting. Furthermore, only 39 percent of twelfth graders believe that schoolwork will be important to their future success. This skepticism resides among the most motivated secondary students—twelfth graders who have stayed in high school for all four years. The least satisfied students already have departed the school system. A 2001 study by the Children’s Defense Fund estimated that one high school student drops out every nine seconds, based upon a seven-hour school day and 180 school days per year.
Schools have recognized the need to reach students and to relate to them in ways more advanced than the traditional pencil-and-paper processes. Many states and school districts have introduced “1:1 initiatives,” which promote the availability of one computer for each student. These initiatives have met with some success but have typically been limited in scope due to the cost of providing a computing device to every student. Windows Mobile powered devices are a compelling alternative to the computer offered in the 1:1 initiatives. With its combination of functionality, size, form factor, and low cost, the Windows Mobile powered device is successfully reaching digital kids on their terms.
Educational institutions typically struggle to meet the educational needs of their students despite ever-tightening budgets. To accommodate shrinking budgets and increase their own productivity and effectiveness, administrators have begun to utilize Windows Mobile powered devices. Because they can have secure access to back-office systems and student information at anytime, from anywhere, administrators can more effectively manage their schools while interacting with teachers and students.
Institutions of higher education are also grappling with how to best reach these digitally savvy students. Many students in colleges and universities have laptop computers but have found the form factor to be less than ideal for use in the classroom or laboratory. Instructors have also found that laptop usage can detract from class interaction, and some professors have taken to banning laptop usage in the classroom. Institutions of higher education are also finding that it’s more difficult to get “bandwidth” with their students and maintain the relevance of their community. Students typically have at least one digital device, be it a mobile phone or music player, and personal e-mail accounts. The challenge in higher education is therefore to achieve relevance with the students, both in and out of the classroom, with a device that facilitates the educational process while complementing how the student prefers to communicate. Windows Mobile powered devices have the form factor and functionality to address both needs.



Examples of Windows Mobile–based Solutions in Education
In deploying Windows Mobile–based solutions, many education institutions have improved the student learning process and outcomes and increased administrator productivity. A number of institutions of higher learning have created a stronger bond with students and enhanced the classroom learning experience by deploying Windows Mobile–based solutions. Several examples follow.
K-12 Improved Learning
Educational institutions are being held accountable for delivering better outcomes. These outcomes are being measured and tracked through regular student testing and graduation rates. The challenge to educators is compounded by the rapidly changing expectations of digitally savvy students. Traditional pen- and paper-based processes and practices are inadequate for today’s students, and the usual tight budget issues make it difficult, if not impossible, for schools to provide true 1:1 technology solutions. Windows Mobile powered devices are being used to overcome these issues.

Table 1. Windows Mobile Improves K-12 Student Learning
K-12 institutions are using Windows Mobile to improve education delivery and outcomes.
Organization Issue Benefits of
Windows Mobile Key Performance Indicators
Wolverhampton City Council The city wanted to provide students with anytime and anywhere access to education. • Anytime, anywhere access to educational materials
• Windows Mobile powered Pocket PC is easy for students to carry and manipulate
• Pocket PCs were less expensive than laptop computers • Raises student standards and willingness to engage and learn
• Narrowed the digital divide
• Enabled parents to take a more active role

Wolverhampton City Council. The council is responsible for 125 schools and has worked hard to establish a reputation for innovation. Wolverhampton itself is a city with a diverse multicultural population in addition to a varied socioeconomic mix. According to the government’s deprivation index, some of the city’s wards are among the 1,000 most deprived in the United Kingdom. The Wolverhampton Community Plan seeks to create a “Learning City,” and the council has a long-standing commitment to investing in learning, especially through schools.
The U.K. government continues to invest heavily in technology for schools to ensure that children everywhere have access to the information and communication technology (ICT) tools that will help them realize their potential both at school and beyond. However, simply putting a computer in every classroom is only part of the solution. The extent to which children get equal access to those vital ICT resources can vary greatly from one school to the next. On average, each child in a primary school will typically have personal access to a computer for up to only 15 percent of his or her educational week.
To find a solution to improving access, the British Educational Communications and Technology Agency (Becta) ran a pilot with Wolverhampton to evaluate the use of portable computers in schools. Building on the success of the initial pilot, the council decided to expand on the scope of the project by involving a wider range of schools and age groups. The project was dubbed Learning to Go, and its core aim was to explore the potential of learners when they have 24-hour-a-day/seven-day-a-week access to portable computing devices for a period of at least 18 months.
“We really wanted to give kids cool devices that they would be happy to use and would find easy to use. We’ve also had feedback in the past that laptops are too big and bulky,” says David Whyley, Head Teacher and ICT Consultant, Wolverhampton City Council. “There’s also an added personal safety concern when using laptops as it can make some children an obvious target for crime—you can easily tell if a child is carrying a laptop home.” Wolverhampton decided to roll out 130 wireless, Web-enabled Toshiba e800s running Windows Mobile 2003 software to two primary schools and two secondary schools.
“Initial project findings indicate that when handheld computers are put in the hands of young learners, they become powerful, enabling devices. Access to e-learning in this way has unlocked the potential of pupils. These ‘Digital Natives’ have exceeded expectations once they truly access an anytime, anywhere, ICT-rich environment,” says Whyley.
Feedback from the pupils involved in the two-year pilot has been extremely positive. Because ICT has become so embedded in everyday lives through television and music, many students are turned off by the traditional way of learning, with its emphasis on paper-based reading and writing. However, the same cannot be said when it comes to e-books. These contain the same content as the traditional literature, but they are packaged in a much more exciting and appealing format, which is more suited to the way many children learn today.
Parents can also now take a more active role in their child’s education because they can easily view resources and assignments on the devices. Because the value of ICT is no longer hidden from parents, they can better motivate their children outside of school and raise standards further. Parents are also asking to use the devices and are learning about ICT with their children at home.
The initial success of the project has encouraged all involved to add momentum to the initiative and drive it forward in other areas. From September 2005, the council hopes to expand the pilot project by a factor of 10 to involve even more learners.

Improved Administration Efficiency
A critical challenge for educational institutions is maximizing the educational value of a limited institution budget. Increasing the productivity of administrators can help to contain expenditures not directly related to fulfilling the educational mission. Enhanced administrative capabilities such as anytime, anywhere access to student information can also help administrators to ensure that students are attending classes or are in the right place at the right time. Windows Mobile–based IT solutions have proven to be especially effective in the improvement of school administration because they integrate easily with existing administrative processes and back-office data.
Table 2. Windows Mobile Improves the Efficiency of School Administration
Educational administrators who use Windows Mobile powered devices can interact with students and colleagues and record and access information anywhere and anytime—thereby helping to improve student care and administrator productivity.
Organization Issue Benefits of
Windows Mobile Key Performance Indicators
Oregon Department of Education Executive administrators spent an increasing amount of time visiting schools, making it difficult to stay in touch and up-to-date. • Anytime, anywhere access without need to access a laptop
• Integration with Windows Server and Exchange Server • Improved administrator productivity
• Improved and accelerated decision making
• Lower hardware and maintenance costs than those of the alternative
Rockdale County Public Schools Whether they were on or off campus, school adminis¬trators needed to keep track of students. • Integration with Microsoft SQL Server™ database provides anytime, anywhere access to student information
• Security capabilities keep student data private • Increased administrator productivity
• Enhanced student safety

Oregon Department of Education. Executives at the Oregon Department of Education (ODE) spent an increasing amount of time in meetings and on the road, working with schools around the state. Often, they couldn’t access crucial business information or check e-mail until day’s end—and then they had to sort through many messages at a time. ODE wanted a mobile solution that would:
• Use existing infrastructure
• Minimize the need for user training
• Support the Microsoft® Office documents that the executives already used
• Take advantage of existing development skills in the Microsoft .NET Framework
ODE chose Siemens SX66s running Windows Mobile 2003 software for Pocket PC Phone Edition over RIM BlackBerry devices. The solution works with the Microsoft Windows Server® operating system and Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 environment that ODE already operates, and it required only minimal configuration changes, which were implemented in less than an hour. Because Exchange ActiveSync® technology pushes messages to Windows Mobile powered devices automatically, executives know that their most current e-mail is always available in the Microsoft Office Outlook® 2003 messaging and collaboration client. Short message service alerts notify IT professionals about network events more quickly than before.
The Windows Mobile–based solution helps reduce costs and boost productivity for ODE:
• It costs U.S.$10,000 less than a BlackBerry solution because it eliminates the need for separate mobile server hardware and software.
• It saves 120 hours yearly in reduced server maintenance.
• The Windows Mobile powered Siemens SX66s receive and respond to e-mail 20 percent faster than the previous devices, which helps the executives make better and faster decisions.
• Executives can use and share Microsoft Office documents, further boosting their productivity.
• The solution supports the use of .NET Framework–based applications across both mobile devices and desktop computers.

Rockdale County Public Schools. Rockdale County Public Schools near Atlanta, Georgia, wanted to better track its students and make its administrators more productive and informed when out of their offices.
Managing student populations is becoming more complex for several reasons. Students are more mobile—for example, many campuses allowing high school students to come and go as they please. Between sporting events, competitions, and field trips, students are spending an increasing amount of school-sponsored time outside of their school buildings. When off-campus, teachers and chaperones sometimes need immediate access to student medical information or discipline history.
And with school safety attracting national attention, administrators need to be aware of students’ whereabouts even within the building during the course of a typical school day. If a school is in lockdown mode with injured students, for example, the staff needs ready access to those students’ medical information and emergency contacts.
Rockdale County turned to Microsoft Certified Partner Otis Educational Systems, which provided the iProfile student profile solution to the county. Based on Windows Mobile software for Pocket PC, the iProfile application gives school staff members password-protected access to students’ schedules, enrollment status, medical information, emergency contact information, discipline history, and identifying photograph, all from Windows Mobile powered devices. iProfile gets its data from the school’s student information system, with which administrators synchronize their Pocket PCs daily.
The OtisEd iProfile application is helping principals, vice principals, and teachers in Rockdale County Public Schools keep tabs on students by providing instant access to student information from any location. As a result, administrators are more productive and students and schools are safer. “The iProfile serves to put the entire student body on alert,” says Grover Dailey, Director of Technology, Rockdale County Public Schools. “It improves everyone’s behavior since the students know they can’t ‘spoof’ the staff.” Multiple security levels on the iProfile device keep student information secure. The iProfile even doubles as a backup for the student information system in case the school network fails. During fire and other safety drills, principals used to pick up a box of student locator cards and carry them outside. Now, they simply grab their Pocket PC with iProfile, which contains far more student information than the box of cards did.

Enhanced Student Relevance and Classroom Experience in Higher Education
Institutions of higher education must compete for students. These education consumers base their choice of school on many factors, including reputation, location, and cost. Another important factor is how well the school relates to them on their terms. These students are increasingly comfortable and even reliant on portable digital devices for communication, entertainment, and information. Schools are finding that Windows Mobile–based solutions are increasing their attractiveness to students by enhancing the educational experience inside and outside of the classroom.
Table 3. Windows Mobile Enhances Student Relevance and the Classroom Experience
Institutions of higher education supporting Windows Mobile powered devices can enhance the classroom experience and increase the satisfaction of its students.
Organization Issue Benefits of
Windows Mobile Key Performance Indicators
University of Strathclyde Students needed greater access to university information. • Anytime, anywhere access to an information portal • Increased student satisfaction
• Enhanced university’s image
Wake Forest University The university wanted to enhance the quality of education by introducing the best mobility solution for classroom learning. • Pocket PCs are easier for students to carry
• Multithreaded Windows Mobile operating system supports complex applications • Classes paced better
• Student confidence increased
• Increased quality of student papers
• Flexible platform supports growth
University of North Carolina at Wilmington Laptop usage was inconsistent because laptops have a high acquisition cost, are prone to damage, and are too large to be used easily in classrooms and labs. • Pocket PCs are easier to carry and use in class
• Automated data-acquisition capabilities • Increased classroom participation by 200 percent
• Instantaneous feedback to faculty
• Increased lab productivity

University of Strathclyde. The University of Strathclyde is a dynamic, top-ranking university based in Scotland. It was recently rated by students as among the most impressive universities in the United Kingdom. Part of the university’s strategy is to remove the physical boundaries often associated with on-campus education.
In 2004, the university started a new scheme to consolidate its central e-mail systems and information portal into a more robust and reliable infrastructure. “We wanted to offer a new service that would help students and staff to connect to any content, from anywhere in the world, using any device,” says Stuart Bough, Director of IT, University of Strathclyde.
Through this new portal, students can access exam results, which are published electronically. They can also view their individual curriculum, class details, and exam timetables from any Internet-enabled device, whether it is a desktop computer, Windows Mobile powered device, or laptop. Bough says, “We use Microsoft technologies across campus and believe that the interoperability offered by Windows Mobile–based smartphones or Pocket PCs is excellent and second to none.”
The solution gives students and staff freedom to access information when and where it is convenient for them, rather than just during university hours. “Windows Mobile powered devices are intuitive and easy-to-use, and most users were already familiar with using Microsoft applications, so adoption has been seamless,” says Bough. George Farquhar, Assistant Director, University of Strathclyde, says, ”We are gathering numerous useful services to offer students over the system. For example, one student was thrilled to be able to receive his exam results on his smartphone while traveling in a remote part of Australia.”

Wake Forest University. Until recently, all Wake Forest University undergraduates received an IBM ThinkPad and a color printer upon enrollment. The computers were then upgraded after two years and became the student’s property upon graduation. In 2001, however, administrators in the university’s Information Services department began to question whether laptops were the only option for mobile computing on campus.
“Students can carry the laptops around campus and, thanks to our wireless network, they can connect to the campus portal and the Internet from anywhere on campus,” says Anne Bishop, Director of Research and Development, Information Services, Wake Forest University. “But many students would prefer a more lightweight computing device to carry throughout the day on campus.”
When Pocket PCs powered by Windows Mobile software became available, Bishop and her colleagues looked closely at the devices—and they liked what they saw.
“We began thinking that maybe the next-generation mobile device would be the Pocket PC rather than a laptop,” says Bishop. “It was a great size so students would carry it. And we liked the Windows Mobile operating system, much better than the Palm OS. Because Windows Mobile software is multithreaded, it provides a robust environment that allows us to do interesting things. We’re not reduced to single, simple tasks.”
Indeed not. One Wake Forest University developer wanted to find out just how robust the Windows Mobile powered Pocket PC is—and created an instant-on, easy-to-manage, Pocket PC–based portable Web server. Called ClassInHand, the software turns a Pocket PC equipped with a wireless card into a Web server, presentation controller, and quizzing and feedback device for the classroom instructor.
“Incorporating all of these functions into one program enables faculty members to have their ‘class in hand’ as they move freely around the classroom,” says Bishop.
Features in the ClassInHand software include:
• Presentation capabilities
• Portable Web server
• Text feedback
• Quiz
• Feedback meter
• Security for presentation control
• Authentication capability
“What started out as a tool to make it easier for instructors to give presentations has become a tool to facilitate two-way communication between instructors and students. Instructors always gave informal quizzes in class to sense student understanding but they never had an accurate, immediate tool to gauge student response and to record it for later use. Now, they can make better-informed decisions about the pace of their classes,” says Bishop. “Instructors instantly know whether the class is following them. They can spend more time on subjects that require it and move quickly past subjects that the class understands. When a class is evenly divided on a question, the instructor can turn the class over to open discussion. And when the instructor ‘re-tests’ on the given question, the students have usually converged on the correct answer. This is not a new teaching methodology for us—it’s a major improvement in the way we can implement our existing teaching methodology.”
Because the university’s custom solutions are based on Windows Mobile software with the Microsoft .NET Compact Framework, they are easy to adapt to new needs. For example, the university is now testing versions of its solution on Windows Mobile powered Motorola MPx200 smartphones. Using the Microsoft Visual Studio® .NET 2003 development system and Visual C#® .NET development language, the university is adapting ClassInHand and its portal access applications to the simpler navigation available for the smartphone interface. If students prefer smartphones to Pocket PCs, Wake Forest University will be ready.

University of North Carolina at Wilmington (UNCW). The university has worked consistently to adopt technology innovations to enhance education. In 1994, it began using notebook computers in science labs. In 1999, it began implementing an 802.11b wireless network throughout the campus.
In the university’s labs, notebook PCs were an improvement over larger, desktop PCs, which took up too much precious countertop workspace. But they weren’t enough of an improvement. They still took up a considerable amount of space, were susceptible to damage from chemicals and other materials used in the labs, and cost too much for the university to supply to every student. Instead, groups of up to four students would work with a single notebook computer.
Elsewhere on campus, professors who hoped that students would bring laptops into lectures to enhance note taking were equally disappointed.
“We had the idea that implementing a mandatory laptop policy would empower students,” says Professor Charles R. Ward, Chair of the Department of Chemistry at UNCW. “But evidence from other universities indicated that students don’t want to bring laptops to class. They get in the way of listening to the lecturer. And, frankly, the lecturer doesn’t want to look out over a sea of raised screens with little bands of eyes peeking out over the tops.”
To facilitate learning in both the laboratory and the lecture hall, UNCW in 2001 began piloting projects in science and mathematics with Windows Mobile powered Pocket PCs, including a mixture of HP Jornada, HP iPAQ, and Dell Axim Pocket PCs.
Students and faculty in selected lecture sessions have been piloting the Student Response System (SRS), in which students use their Pocket PCs to indicate their answers to a lecturer’s question. Students respond anonymously, with their responses projected graphically on a display screen in the front of the lecture hall. The result helps lecturers to understand just how much the class understands, so they can review a point to clear up confusion or move ahead if the class comprehends the topic.
For example, in chemistry classes, lecturers might find out whether students are following the lectures by showing graphs of chemical reactions and asking students to identify the equivalence point of a titration or the point where equilibrium is achieved. Student responses can then form the basis for class discussion.
Meanwhile, Pocket PCs have replaced laptops in UNCW’s chemistry labs, and they’re being used for everything from measuring and recording data from experiments to analyzing the findings and reporting on the results.
To support those activities, the Pocket PCs are outfitted with a “data acquisition” device manufactured by Data Harvest, which connects to the Pocket PC through its flash memory slot.
When students have completed taking measurements, they continue to use the Pocket PC to analyze their results. Software called Graph Data, written by UNCW faculty member Russell Herman, allows students to plot their data on graphs and investigate their findings in more detail by applying mathematical formulas to them. The students attach keyboards to the Pocket PCs and use Microsoft Office Word Mobile and Microsoft Office Excel® Mobile to create reports that they submit for grading. The reports are uploaded from the Pocket PCs to a server over the wireless network.
Students use the Internet Explorer Mobile Web browser on their Pocket PCs to access Web-based versions of texts such as the material safety data sheets that they must review before using hazardous chemicals.
Even unplugged from the Internet, the UNCW Pocket PCs are great scientific resources. The university has loaded them with a molecular modeling program—“the type of program that was only found on a supercomputer 10 years ago,” says Chemistry Professor Jimmy Reeves—as well as a graphing calculator, periodic table, and utilities for screen capture and file transfer.
When UNCW began piloting the SRS, faculty members thought they’d get a better sense of how well their students understood the lectures. They got that—and something they didn’t bargain for: real classroom discussion. Now that students are using SRS on Pocket PCs, participation in classroom discussion has soared from 30 percent to nearly 100 percent of the students.
When Professor Reeves’s chemistry labs relied on notebook PCs, up to four students had to huddle over a single machine; the university couldn’t afford to supply more laptops per class. But because Pocket PCs cost a fraction of what laptop PCs cost, the university can—and does—make them available to every student in the pilot labs. Over the coming year, it plans to roll out the Pocket PCs to all chemistry students.
Conclusion
Windows Mobile–based solutions are generating significant benefits for many educational institutions. Increased accountability for education outcomes, continuing budgetary challenges, and the heightened expectations of digitally savvy students are issues that schools are successfully addressing with mobile solutions. Institutions of higher education are using mobility solutions to find new and richer ways to reach their students.
Windows Mobile offers a rich platform that is supported by powerful development tools like Microsoft Visual Studio and that integrates tightly with enterprise-scale server software like Microsoft Exchange Server and SQL Server. The familiar Windows® operating system interface reduces training requirements and eases user adoption.
Microsoft and its partners have many resources available to assist educators in identifying the benefits that educational institutions can realize from Windows Mobile–based solutions.
Please go to:
Windows Mobile for Business
www.microsoft.com/windowsmobile/business/default.mspx

Software and Solutions for Education
www.microsoft.com/education/default.mspx
www.microsoft.com/education/pocketpc.mspx



About the Authors
Value Prism Consulting, LLC is an independent consulting firm that provides strategic, financial, and operational consulting services to companies facing the challenges of industry, market and technological change. Value Prism assists clients with valuations, business case development and decision support analysis. Its solutions provide accurate and supportable information that lets a company or a decision maker act on opportunities and avoid costly pitfalls. Value Prism solutions measure the results of business process improvement, capital investments, and major budget spending decisions.
Please go to www.valueprism.com for more information.


Appendix—Customer Descriptions and Links to Case Studies

Wolverhampton City Council maintains 125 schools, which serve a diverse multicultural and socioeconomic city.
http://www.microsoft.com/resources/casestudies/CaseStudy.asp?CaseStudyID=16914

The Oregon Department of Education provides leadership for all elementary and secondary students in Oregon’s public schools and education service districts.
https://members.microsoft.com/customerevidence/Search/EvidenceDetails.aspx?EvidenceID=10674&LanguageID=1

Rockdale County Public Schools serves 17 schools, 14,000 students, and 2,000 staff members in Rockdale County, Georgia.
http://www.microsoft.com/resources/casestudies/casestudy.asp?CaseStudyID=16973

Glasgow, Scotland–based University of Strathclyde is dedicated to making higher education available to all students, regardless of their background.
https://members.microsoft.com/customerevidence/Search/EvidenceDetails.aspx?EvidenceID=13690&LanguageID=1

Located since 1956 in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, Wake Forest University was founded in 1834. A private, coeducational institution, it has been a university since 1967.
http://www.microsoft.com/windowsmobile/business/success/education.mspx

The University of North Carolina at Wilmington is consistently ranked as one of the top 10 public universities in the southern United States by U.S. News and World Report.
http://www.microsoft.com/resources/casestudies/CaseStudy.asp?CaseStudyID=14757

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