Lesson Learned: Drive Technology Use with Top Influencers in Education

Google “ways to engage students” or “how to make learning fun” and your search will return tens of thousands of hits. Why? Because motivating students and encouraging their focus is among the biggest challenges teachers face. Even the most experienced teacher searches for new ways to bring enthusiasm into the classroom. Xerox has identified at least one method that can help. Color. A survey from Harris Interactive found that using more color in classroom materials could potentially help students become stronger and more enthusiastic learners. That message is spreading, but adopting color printing and other technological changes is still a challenge. The key to overcoming them is identifying your top influencers, motivating them to action and addressing costs as they relate to budgets.

Fact: Color Enhances Learning

In an age where most children begin interacting with the full color display of digital screens and technology while still in diapers, it makes sense that they expect to experience every aspect of their world in rich, vibrant color. In fact, any parent (or marketing expert) will tell you that screen life aside, kids simply have a natural connection with color – just look at their toys. Continuing to build on this connection in their formal learning environment is a smart and effective strategy for success in the classroom.

Source: Xerox, Harris Survey Research

Research from Harris Interactive also suggests that students not only prefer color to be part of their classroom learning experience, they understand its importance in helping them learn. In fact, as the Harris study points out, 77% of students from grades 3 to 12 enthusiastically agreed that using more color in printed learning materials can engage them in the following ways:

  • Focus on what information is important
  • Remember key facts and information
  • Be more interested in their work

Not only that. 54% of students reported that they are more likely to read a document that contains color, while 69% of students said they are better able to understand new ideas when presented in color, and a whopping 77% of students say color helps them remember what they read more easily.

So why isn’t color the common practice?

How Teachers are Driving Technology Use

Creating meaningful technological change in American classrooms is no easy assignment. While many students, teachers and administrators already support adding more color to classroom materials, some schools are reluctant to increase the use of color printing because of its traditionally high cost and perceived difficulty to manage. So how do you help your district see the value of color? By giving your most valuable players a voice.

Most teachers are enthusiastic about trying out new technologies. A 2016 survey from Education Week showed that twenty-four percent of the teachers who responded saw themselves as “risk takers” who were willing to try new technologies even if they may not succeed, while an additional 47 percent said they liked working with new digital tools not yet commonly used.

Source: Education Week, 2016

That same research shows the importance of the teacher voice in making technology decisions. The research indicates that new programs are most likely to succeed when they have the support, involvement and buy-in from teachers themselves – and could be doomed to failure if they don’t. 40 percent said they distrusted information from education technology companies, and the majority said that they were most influenced by their own experiences or those of other teachers in their building. Likewise, they said that they were far more likely to learn about new education technology tools from teachers in their school than from any other source, and that they tend to put greater faith in other educators’ statements about technology than they do in the opinions of administrators or outside experts.

Facilitate learning improvements and stay within print budget

While teachers are primarily concerned with increased learning opportunities benefitting all of their students, especially with No Child Left Behind (NCLB) requirements in mind, district administrators have to consider other factors, like budgets and security. NCLB, is an Act and policy which works to close the student achievement gap with accountability, flexibility, and choice. Fortunately for both sides, Xerox now offers affordable color printing solutions that can enhance learning while allowing schools to better control costs, access and workflow.

Color impacts student performance

Change can be daunting. It’s important to make sure you’re communicating with your influencers in a language they understand. Start the dialogue by showing how these new changes can benefit them, and meet specific needs or challenges they’ve expressed in the past. In this case, increases in classroom productivity as well as improvements in student engagement should be the point of focus- and there are plenty of other benefits to choose form as well.

 A centralized Xerox® multifunction device can help you eliminate those small, expensive-to-use inkjet printers, putting everything you need in one place so that your costs will fall and your productivity – and your students – will thrive. Connectkey® enabled devices give you the choice of built-in software or optional integrated software packages are available that allow your school to manage costs by controlling who has access to your Xerox® color devices. Enjoy the ability to track all print and copy activity so you can make informed decisions. Exclusive to Xerox solid ink devices, provide color pages for the same price as monochrome pages, a no brainer if you want to print a lot of color. Decide which teachers and administrators can print in color and set customized print limits for individuals or departments. With these devices, the right process can make color printing an affordable value proposition.


In this case study, a school district in Rochester, NY talks about how they incorporated Xerox MFPs to support teachers and their important structural classroom materials while also saving the district money at the same time.

“We wanted to offer teachers the opportunity to print as needed to support their classrooms.” – David Rovitelli, Director of IT, East Rochester School District.

“The difference with Xerox has been night and day. The new machines free me up to do the parts of my job that I need to be doing.” – Diana Luce, School Librarian.

Finding an offering that fits your budget and productivity needs, and aligns with your lesson plans to get the job done is a challenge, but it’s one Xerox is willing to meet head on. Find out more about how Xerox can help you satisfy your top influencers while also meeting the needs that matter to you.

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