There are a variety of technologies available to enhance in-class presentations. Read the descriptions below to determine which one is best for you. All of these items must be used with a projector except for the Promethean White board.
A TABLET PC ($1800 - $4000) is expensive but has many benefits. This technology is highly mobile and the pen tool is easy to position on the screen. A table PC can be easily connected to a projector and allows the speaker to face the audience while presenting. The tablet PC's pen tool allows you to write, or "use ink" in most applications, including PowerPoint, OneNote and the Elluminate Whiteboard. Most programs also allow audio be synchronously recorded with written notes. The pen can also be used as a mouse.
The CINTIQ ($2000) is a pen display/monitor that functions in the same way as a TABLET PC. It must be connected to a laptop or desktop computer. Cintiqs offer the same benefits as a TABLET PC but are less portable (think computer monitor). Connecting a Cintiq and Projector to your laptop requires the use of an external video adapter. For more information on this connection process read this document.
A DIGITAL TABLET ($60 - $200) is an affordable alternative to a Tablet PC or Cintiq pen display. The tablet connects to a computer by USB and provides many of the same features as a tablet PC. While they are affordable, tablets require more practice to position the pen display because it is not placed directly on the monitor display. For this reason writing can be awkward at first and using the pen as a mouse takes practice. In general, the low price of pen displays make them worth the learning curve and a realistic technology to suggest for student purchase.
The PROMETHEAN WHITEBOARD $(2000-$5000) interactive whiteboard offers a large, projected display with interactive pen tool and mouse functionality. The major drawback is that the speaker's back faces the audience during a presentation, although this comparable to writing on a Chalk board or regular Whiteboard. The Whiteboards are not portable, requiring fixed installations in classrooms.
The ELMO ($1000 - $3000), although it is not pen-driven, is a unique presentation technology because it allows users to share 3D objects with its document camera. The ELMO is mobile and allows speakers to face the audience. Using the ELMO with Elluminate software allows for the synchronization of local and distance classes. Distance students can view the same presentation as in-class students. This technology is also useful for demonstrating languages and math equations. This movie will provide a brief introduction to the ELMO document camera and it's ability to view objects in 3D.
|TABLET PC||CINTIQ||DIGITAL TABLET||PROMETHEAN||ELMO|
|Easy to Position Pen||X||X||X|
|Speaker Faces Audience||X||X||X|
|Device is Mobile||X||(Semi)||X||X|
|Device is Fixed in Classroom||X|
|Use MS Paint and White board||X||X||X||X|
|Sync Local & Distance Classes||X|
|Use with PowerPoint & OneNote||X||X||X|
|Use with Acct, Math, Sci, Language||X||X|