About the Model
Implementing new technologies in the classroom can be overwhelming. With an almost unlimited supply of teaching ideas and tools available on the Internet, being able to select only what will be the most meaningful to your students is key.
The SAMR model, developed by Dr. Ruben Puentedura, can be used as a compass to guide the implementation of new technologies in the classroom towards the most significant benefits for teaching and learning.
The model suggests four levels of implementation, ranging from the simple Substitution (S) of an existing tool or activity to the complete Redefinition (R) of a learning situation.
Substitution consists of replacing a tool or an activity by a technological equivalent, without necessarily trying to improve the task. For example, drawing in Paint, (which essentially offers the same tools physically available to students such as pencils, brushes, eraser…) is a substitution of drawing or painting on paper.
Augmentation goes a little bit further and takes advantage of functionalities offered by the technological tools to improve the process or the result. For example, using Antidote to correct and diversify the vocabulary of a typed text is an augmentation, making the task easier and allowing students to go beyond what they could accomplish only with traditional tools.
Modification consists of deeply revisiting a task, enhancing it through technological tools. Replacing traditional presentations by allowing students to create a movie on the same topic is an example of modification.
Redefinition is the highest stage of the SAMR model, where technologies and learning are deeply intertwined, allowing for tasks that were not possible before. Students promoting a career and community development project through a crowdfunding platform is an example of redefinition.