Tablets in Education: Put Learning in Students’ Hands

Tablets and 2-in-1s make education a unique, mobile experience for young students to learn anywhere.

Tablets for Education Takeaways

  • Tablets and 2-in-1s in tablet mode are ideal for young students as they develop foundational learning skills and technical literacy.

  • Mobile, touch-enabled devices allow students to engage in collaborative, hands-on learning in and out of the classroom.

  • When selecting an educational device, to deliver an optimal learning experience and help maximize your technology investment, consider factors including processing power, form factor, screen size, weight, screen resolution, compatibility, security, and manageability.

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Benefits of Using Tablets in the Classroom

Tablets and 2-in-1s in tablet mode are great choices for younger students between the ages of four and 12 to engage in collaborative, hands-on learning.

  • Mobility and durability. Tablets and 2-in-1s are flexible, durable form factors that offer students the ability to learn in any environment and promote both individual development and collaboration during group activities.
  • Interactivity with touchscreens and styluses. Touch-based interfaces support inquiry and exploration of material through direct interaction, as well as data gathering and presentation activities. Engaging, touch-based lessons can also help younger students learn subject matter while developing motor skills. With the addition of a stylus, students can practice handwriting, draw, sketch, or take notes by hand.
  • Long-lasting battery life. Tablets and 2-in-1s that come with long-lasting batteries allow devices to be used for classes and learning activities throughout the day without requiring a charge.
  • Introduction to technology as a learning tool. Familiarity and proficiency with technology is critical in today’s digital environment and for developing skills required for jobs of the future. Tablets and 2-in-1s provide an approachable introduction to technology that students can build on as they progress through school.

Considerations When Choosing Tablets for Education

When you’re selecting educational tablets for students, there are several factors to consider to get the most versatility and use from your investment.

Processor Performance

It’s important that educational devices provide the level of performance needed to support common learning activities and uses without interruption. Students using tablets in education may access the internet and online learning platforms; engage with educational applications that encourage learning through touch-, audio-, text-, and video-based activities and games; or capture images and videos with an integrated camera.

While Intel offers a wide range of processors that can provide powerful performance options for students of all ages, tablet devices with Intel® Celeron® and Intel® Core™ i3 processors are right-sized to support the activities of this younger age range, as well as scale to support students as they grow and increase the number and complexity of programs and tools they use.

Learn more about processor performance needs based on typical student usage by age and grade.

Form Factor

Another element to consider is the form factor that will work best for your students: a tablet or a 2 in 1 device. Both are mobile form factors that students can use in and out of the classroom, and, when 2-in-1s are in tablet mode, both offer the same single-screen, touch-based experience.

Thinking about how the devices will be used and by which ages can help inform your choice. Tablets provide added durability and are a thinner and lighter-weight option, as they don’t come with an attached keyboard. 2-in-1s offer a more versatile option out of the box, operating in tablet mode and—because of their attached keyboard—easily shifting to keyboard-and-mouse operation for more involved tasks. Some tablets can also be used with a detachable keyboard; however, if you want the flexibility of this option, be sure the tablet you select can support added peripherals. Digital pens and styluses can be used with either form factor.

Read more tips for choosing the right device.

Display Screen

Screen size is another important consideration. Device screens should be large enough so that the learning material is easy to see and capable for interactivity. This way, students can get the most out of interactive lessons and experience reduced potential for eye fatigue.1 At the same time, a larger screen will increase the overall device size and weight. When selecting a tablet or 2-, consider what screen and device size will provide an optimal ergonomic experience for the age of your students.

Screen resolution and brightness can also have an impact on eyesight.2 Intel-powered Windows devices are available with an adaptive brightness feature that automatically adjusts display brightness to the surrounding environment. The adaptive brightness feature also helps to reduce power usage, providing additional battery life.

Learn about balancing screen time and learning.

Integrated Camera

Mobility is a key benefit of tablet devices, allowing students to learn in many environments. Devices that have integrated, world-facing cameras—meaning cameras that can capture images from either side of the device—will provide the most flexibility for students who want to capture images and videos as part of learning activities such as in-class projects and outside field trips or when creating presentations.

Compatibility

In addition to compatibility with detachable keyboards, another factor to evaluate is support for frequently used peripherals, including headphones, USB devices, external displays, or other classroom technology that devices may need to connect to. Ensure the devices you select have ports to accommodate the most common connections to optimize use.

Connectivity

Having responsive and reliable network connectivity is critical for technology-enabled learning. Not only do devices with Intel® Celeron® and Intel® Core™ i3 processors provide powerful performance, but they also support Intel® Wi-Fi 6/6E (Gig+), which enables nearly 3x faster speeds3 (up to 6x faster downloads on new 6 GHz networks) and up to 75 percent latency reduction,4 ideal for videoconferencing during remote or hybrid learning.

Security

Device security is important for all device types but especially for mobile devices, like tablets and 2-and-1s, that are used in different environments and connected to nonschool networks. Keeping devices secure against viruses, cyberattacks, and bad actors is crucial for preventing interruptions to learning and for protecting individual privacy and data, especially when one in three educational devices contains sensitive data.5

Administrators and IT decision-makers should consider a combination of software- and hardware-based device security features, such as those offered on Intel-based devices, that provide protection at multiple levels against a range of possible attacks.

Manageability and Repairability

When you’re working with a distributed fleet of educational devices, selecting stable and reliable devices is a must, as well as considering how devices can be managed, maintained, and repaired as easily as possible.

Not only do Intel-based components in educational devices meet robust requirements for educational uses, but Intel-based devices are designed to be both durable and repairable. This helps to lengthen the life of your devices and reduce electronic waste and environmental impact.

Frequently Asked Questions

Tablets and 2-in-1s in tablet mode enable students, ages four to 12, to develop foundational learning skills and technical literacy through engaging, touch-based interactions. There are several ways to extend the use of tablets in education for a broader range of learning activities, such as using an optional stylus for sketching and freehand annotations. To support the use of productivity tools for creating documents and simple presentations, a detachable keyboard can be added to a tablet, or 2-in-1 devices can be easily converted to keyboard-and-mouse operation.

Legal and Disclaimers

Performance varies by use, configuration, and other factors. Learn more on the Performance Index site.

Performance results are based on testing as of dates shown in configurations and may not reflect all publicly available ​updates. See backup for configuration details. No product or component can be absolutely secure. Results may vary.

Product and Performance Information

1Sirinthip Pakdee and Praphatson Sengsoon, “Immediate Effects of Different Screen Sizes on Visual Fatigue in Video Display Terminal Users,” Iranian Rehabilitation Journal 19, no.2 (2021): 137-146, irj.uswr.ac.ir/article-1-1318-en.pdf.
2Sarah C.P. Williams, “Preventing Eyestrain from Digital Devices,” WebMD, accessed May 3, 2022, webmd.com/eye-health/prevent-digital-eyestrain.
3Nearly 3x Faster: 802.11ax 2x2 160 MHz enables 2402 Mbps maximum theoretical data rates, ~3x (2.8x) faster than standard 802.11ac 2x2 80 MHz (867 Mbps) as documented in IEEE 802.11 wireless standard specifications and require the use of similarly configured 802.11ax wireless network routers.
4Up to 75 percent latency reduction: Is based on Intel simulation data (79 percent) of 802.11ax with and without OFDMA using nine clients. Average latency without OFDM is 36ms; with OFDMA average latency is reduced to 7.6ms. Latency improvement requires that the 802.11ax (Wi-Fi 6) router and all clients support OFDMA.
5Three key trends impacting K–12 IT and security,” absolute.com, date of access: April 2022. https://www.absolute.com/go/reports/endpoint-risk-report-education/