There's an app out there that calls itself an iPad whiteboard. It allows you to write on it with various types of markers, import pictures and play videos. It records what happens and allows you to play it back. Sounds great.

My question is, why are we replicating whiteboards? Why would we use an iPad, a mobile, multifaceted high-functioning device to replicate an immobile, wall-mounted writing surface?

This looks like a great app, and I'll certainly use it, but let's admit that it is not the answer, but just a bridge. It's a step in the right direction of where we need to go in terms of creating interactive, portable learning platforms that allow for capturing our learning and discovery process. What we don't need is more whiteboards.

Here's the link:

App store

Tags: Mac, Ralston, Stuart, Teaching, app, apple, e-learning, iPad, learning, tech, More…tools, transform, whiteboard

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Problem solved, almost. There is a very promising new application for the iPad called Doceri. It's still being developed, and has some kinks for functionality and cross-app usefulness, but it's on the right track.


Formost in usefulness is that users are able to annotate on anything your computer screen shows. Simply use your computer connected to the projector to show your display, then use your iPad as a mobile writing surface and computer control.


The second best feature is that it that allows you to play back your annotations, step by step and with variable speed. This flexibility will give educators an incredible amount of flexibility for how they use the application.


There are two drawbacks, and they both revolve around the stylus that is suggested for the app. First, it's expensive and ugly. Second, it needs to plug into the earphone jack of the iPad. However, it has a feature that almost completely redeems these issues. There is an option to change the angle of your hand, so you can rest your hand on the iPad while writing - left or right-handed.


If any of you have used this program, I would love to hear about it.

I think your missing a key idea behind ScreenChomp, that may be a fault of the reviewer though. You are right, if you use ScreenChomp as outlined there is little that is revolutionary about it. But, there is little that is revolutionary about Doceri either. To me it seems rooted in the teacher centered, lecture based classroom. Advances in Ed tech should not focus primarily on making me a better lecturer.

The awesome thing ScreenChomp or similar apps do is to allow us to capture students thougt processes. When I grade a test all I get to see is the final answer and some work. I've used iPads with screen recording to capture students describing how they will answer problems. This tells me a lot more about what they know than the work they might show on the test. It would, of course, be more valuable to have 1 on 1 interviews with my students, but unfortunately there is not enough time in a class period to do that.

If we really want to move forward we need to not only look at how technology can make us more effective presenters, but also how it can enhance learning and assessment when we put it into student's hands. I've been toying with ways of creating my own Interactive WB for years and none of my solutions fundamentally changed outcomes. It wasn't until I stopped lecturing every day that I began to see radical improvement in student learning.

Good luck with Doceri, it looks like a good product. The stylus is also pretty cool. Another great Stylus is the Adonit Jot. You can get it from Amazon:

It really is the best stylus I've tried, but I haven't had a chance to try Doceri's.

Steve Dickie

Hey thanks for the reply and tip on the other stylus. I'll certainly check it out!


I think we're fundamentally on the same page. I agree that the future of ed tech is about student centered learning, not improving the classic, lecture-based classroom. The fault that you pointed out in the first review, is perhaps the same fault that was in my review. Namely, that neither specifically mentioned how the technology could be used to transform teaching and learning to foster a student-centered environment.


Surely, both tools could be used to varying degrees by thoughtful educators to reach this goal. I just happen to believe that the underlying goal of ScreenChomp (white board replacement) is a flawed approach to app development.


Perhaps Doceri's approach could be simply categorized as lecture enhancement, but their underlying approach is much much more powerful. While Doceri has some improvements to make, here is where I see it starting to make a significant difference: Doceri isn't based within one application. It allows movement throughout the computer system and the web, while still maintaining the ability to annotate, record and play back.


Let's say I want to teach my students research skills for a history project. Students tend to approach a research assignment by trying to 'google it.' However, one of my goals is to help students become independent learners and critical thinkers who have the ability to find excellent sources of information on their own. [With Doceri's capability to move throughout different computers applications, I can easily demonstrate a solid approach to research. Plus, throughout the demonstration, I can highlight, comment, cross out and analyze the information I find. Then I can save the tutorial for students who were absent, or those who want to see it again.] Once students have learned that skill, simply take every "I" within the [bracket]s and replace it with "students."


Or take a math lesson for example. Let's say students are learning about measuring angles. The teacher hands the iPad to a student, says "Please find some angles, and show us how to to measure them." The student Googles away and easily finds an image with angles, say Beijing's Bird's Nest stadium, then proceeds to use the annotation tool to demonstrate how to measure the angles.





Or take physics for example. Students could apply their understanding of a law by using Doceri with an online video of, say, a silly cat blooper. To demonstrate their thought process and understanding of the law, they could simply pause the video at key moments and write an annotation explaining what is happening. Upon play back, the video shows elements of physics, highlights the students thought process and allows others to learn from it.


In all of these examples the students are able to use Doceri to explore learning across the web and throughout all of the computer's programs. Instead of being limited to a digital whiteboard, then can fluidly navigate the digital world while demonstrating and practicing important skills. That's the advantage I see in Doceri's approach.


Thanks for your response. It has been fun to think a bit further about applying this technology in the classroom. 




I completely agree. I do not understand the purpose of the whiteboard app. I would much rather use a regular whiteboard, or better yet, a Smartboard!


I think if you make video in whiteboard style will bring some great benefits to you, because, in whiteboard style of animation creative writers developed all the characters plus surroundings in a white board.Actually whiteboard style is capturing someone’s effort when he is crafting an art on white board. Whiteboard video is extremely effective in institution to explain the educational stuff to students and it is also so effective in the corporate level to explain the complex business ideas.



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