Technology integration frameworks like SAMR, Triple E, or TPACK are useful in considering the ways in which technology is being used to further student learning. However, these frameworks evaluate the process of integration, not a specific tool or device. Interestingly, there are not a wide variety of common metrics available for evaluating digital tools.
In the past, I’ve mainly used personal experience to guide the evaluation process. I identified a digital education tool, tried it out separate from my students, and if it seemed to meet my needs in the classroom, I later tried it out with my class. This is wholly subjective and not very helpful in terms of giving others a framework.
After spending quite some time researching what other schools were using, I discovered the following rubric which would aid in an objective evaluation of a given tool or device.
This rubric was created by Lauren Anstey and Gavan Watson, educational developers for Western University. The intended purpose of the rubric is to “offer educators a framework, with criteria and levels of achievement, to assess the suitability of an e-learning tool for their learners’ needs and for their own learning outcomes and classroom context.” While created specifically for higher education, I believe this rubric is absolutely applicable for primary and secondary schools as well. For more on the rationale behind the rubric and an overview of the main categories, please visit “A Rubric for Evaluating E-Learning Tools in Higher Education.”