Windows 10 for Education Overview
Whether students are present in the classroom, learning from home, or both, Windows 10 is a robust and highly scalable computing choice for K‒12 education.
Windows 10 is a flexible, versatile choice that grows with your students. Windows runs on a wide range of computers, laptops, tablets, and mobile devices, and it supports countless installed and online applications.
Further, comprehensive licenses provide each educator with Windows 10 and Microsoft 365—including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and other favorite applications—for a modest annual cost that covers up to 40 students. The bundle also includes accessibility tools and built-in security.
Windows 10 Features for Education
Videoconferencing quickly became the norm for K‒12 students in 2020. Educators, parents, and kids faced new challenges, trying to make the online experience as interactive and compelling as possible to promote student engagement.
From the outset, students equipped with Windows and the right devices had ample resources to support collaboration, multitasking, and rich media sharing. Special versions of Windows 10, Microsoft 365, Teams, and learning tools enabled educators to transition smoothly to the online environment while maintaining the security and accessibility of in-person learning.
Power to Multitask
During the pandemic, Windows 10 empowered students and teachers to succeed at remote learning, as their systems enabled near-real-time responsiveness online, mimicking the interactivity of a real-world classroom.
Many students enjoyed “gamified” lessons or gathered online to play games and socialize. In some schools, students resumed extracurricular activities such as school newspapers, yearbooks, and even esports. Class “trips” were also scheduled, where the students toured virtual reality museums and other online experiences.
These experiences were made possible by Windows 10, which enabled students to download and stream rich content at high frame rates, open multiple apps, and transition seamlessly between online and offline activities. By reducing lag time, Windows 10 minimizes interruptions to enable multitasking and fast task switching.
Educators, parents, and students can also harness the power of Windows 10 to personalize and adapt lessons to each student’s unique learning style or preference.
Windows 10 supports rich media experiences and versatile devices, including digital whiteboards, interactive flat panel displays, tablets and laptops with touchscreens, and digital pens to give students endless choices and opportunities to engage with class work on their own terms.
Smart cameras are also being used more commonly to record lessons for asynchronous viewing, so students can rewatch some or all of the class at their own pace. Windows 10 is optimized for video, even when livestreamed, reducing interruptions or distractions.
Windows 10 Security
Windows 10 includes Microsoft Defender, an advanced antivirus program that scans constantly for malware, viruses, and other security threats. This safety feature is updated automatically to protect your devices and networks.
System administrators will also want to deploy Microsoft Intune to manage mobile devices and apps used by students and educators and to help protect the entire network from unauthorized access and intrusion.
These Windows security features are customizable to enable parents, educators, or administrators to protect their students’ identities and private information online and keep them safe from outside threats.
Microsoft includes a suite of productivity tools that help educators manage and organize administrative tasks so they can focus on lesson planning and teaching.
Advanced applications and features are tuned for Windows, so they run faster online or offline. Students and educators can multitask, work on large files, and create rich content with photo and video editing, data processing, and 3D modeling applications. Optimization reduces lag time, so students experience fewer interruptions or “frozen screen” incidents.
Windows 10 Accessibility
Many students require accommodations to be successful at school due to neurodiversity, sensory limitations, or a unique learning style.
Windows includes built-in and third-party student accessibility features to resize text, images, and cursors; adjust on-screen color schemes or contrast; or abandon the screen altogether and navigate with a screen-reading app, voice commands, and a Braille keyboard.
Increased Student Engagement
Windows 10 is fully compatible with a host of third-party applications that make learning more intuitive, interactive, and enjoyable.
Many educators use SMART Learning Suite, an app for Microsoft Teams, to add engaging, collaborative activities, graphics, animations, and sounds to their lessons in PDF or PowerPoint.
Another favorite is Kahoot!, which incorporates live games, polls, competitions, and challenges into lessons. SMART, Kahoot!, and many other apps integrate seamlessly with Windows 10 and Microsoft Teams and are equally effective in promoting student engagement in the classroom or online.
Microsoft also provides lesson planning tools for educators who want to enable social and emotional learning in the classroom or online. One such program, Mindfulness in Minecraft, employs a popular video game to offer an alternative learning environment that spurs social interaction and critical thinking.
Intel-Powered Windows Devices
The decades-long partnership between Microsoft and Intel has resulted in unsurpassed compatibility and optimization of Windows 10 on any Intel® processor-based platform.
Depending on the expected workload, the educator’s preferences, and IT requirements of the school or district, Intel-powered devices with Windows 10 for education can be sized to fit any need or budget.
When selecting a device, it is important to evaluate the processing power needs of students both at their current level and for the next three years. This will ensure that the device you select can scale to meet their changing needs. A typical progression of Windows devices would advance according to grade level.