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Using the SAMR model

The Substitution Augmentation Modification Redefinition (SAMR) model, developed by Dr Ruben Puentedura, offers a method of seeing how computer technology might impact teaching and learning. It shows a progression that adopters of educational technology often follow as they progress through teaching and learning with technology. 

It is a framework through which teachers can assess and evaluate the technology used in the classroom. As teachers move along the continuum, computer technology becomes more important in the classroom and more invisibly woven into the demands of good teaching and learning.

Learning with Digital Technologies (LWDT) facilitator, Diana Wilkes explains how she introduced the SAMR model to schools using digital technologies. It’s a really important framework that the teachers can use to help them identify the level the tools they are using are at within the model. She describes changing the task design to enable learners to do something in a way that’s not possible without that technology.

Examples of using digital technology to enhance and transform learning

  • Collect student data by using an online form.
  • Create a slideshow instead of a poster.
  • Make a digital illustration.
  • Collect and organise data using a spreadsheet.
  • Use a comment feature to critique writing samples.
  • Create a presentation with multimedia elements. 
  • Use digital technology to create an interactive quiz.
  • Create charts to illustrate data.
  • Use multimedia to serve as a backdrop for new design.
  • Collect and link student recordings and data for use in e-portfolios.
  • Create a hyperlinked assignment task; include information and links to outside sources for students.
  • Use online forms to create a "choose your own path" student adventure.
  • Create and publish an e-book.
  • Create a comic strip, mind map or other illustration to summarise a story.
  • Flip learning – create a digital space for students' classwork, complete with videos and links to outside sources.

Diana Wilkes discusses how using the SAMR framework – substitution, augmentation, modification, and redefinition helped shift teachers' skills and ability from merely using digital technologies, to making the best choices of technologies for their students' learning.

Teacher Kate Friedwald explains how whole school PD at Wairakei School, based on the Teaching as Inquiry model, is being applied to ICT or some form of technology, and how through the SAMR model they are ensuring students get the best from their teaching. 

Ben Britton, lead teacher ICT at Wellington High School, discusses how they use the SAMR model to evaluate plan for effective use of technologies in the classroom. He explains the process of trial and error that they went through, and how they experimented with the SAMR model to find what worked best for them.


The SAMR model explained by Ruben R. Puentedura