The SAMR Model: Transforming Your Students’ Learning Environment through Effective Technology


Screenshot from Transformation, Technology, and Education Presentation

The SAMR model guides edtech specialists and teachers in designing technology-integrated units to transform the learning environment. It is also a reflective tool for teachers to fine-tune their practices and pedagogy that involve technology.

Dr. Ruben Puentedura, a consultant in education technology, developed the SAMR model to categorize technology usage into four technological levels: substitution, augmentation, modification, and redefinition.

  1. The Substitution level is the lowest level of technology usage in the model. Students use a technology that replaces a traditional tool, but results in no change in functionality.
  2. In the Augmentation level, a traditional tool is also replaced with a new technology, but the result is a small enhancement in functionality.
  3. The Modification level, however, is the first level that exhibits transformation in a learning environment. This level of technological use  alters the whole design of a learning activity, which results in an increase in teacher/student productivity.
  4. The highest level of technological use is the Redefinition level.  This level consists of creative and innovative learning activities that were impossible to execute previously. The technology in this level allows students to perform authentic tasks that require students to communicate, collaborate, research, and think critically. The new technology helps students gain a deeper understanding of the content and help master important skills.

It is important to note that it is not always incorrect to be in the first two technological levels (known as the Enhancement levels). Teachers may need to start at these levels to transition into the higher technological levels (known as Transformation



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