National Educational Technology Standards

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The ISTE Educational Technology Standards (formerly National Educational Technology Standards (NETS)) are a set of standards published by the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) for the purpose of leveraging the use of technology in K-12 education to enable students to learn effectively and live productively in an increasingly digital society.[1]

With technology teachers can teach outside of the classroom. It is very beneficial for students to learn quickly and easily. The use of technology motivates students to learn, and using the internet will eliminate the unwanted (extra) information provided in text books. Classrooms need to be updated. Teaching and learning need to change as society changes. Using any type of technology, cameras, computers, etc., students can resort back to the saved images and such to remember things that they can never look at again. For example, a class goes on a field trip to study rocks, students take pictures of them so when they go back to the classrooms they can see exactly what each rock looks like instead of struggling to remember.

Technology is beneficial to all of those hands on children. Students will be determined to learn as much as they can because it is a fun experience. Having engaged students will call for their success.


The NETS project was initiated by ISTE’s Accreditation and Professional Standards Committee.[2] It was funded by NASA in consultation with the U.S. Department of Education, the Millken Exchange on Education Technology and Apple Computer.[3] The first set of standards, NETS for Students, was released in June 1998.[3] In 2000, the ISTE revised its previously published standards for teachers, ISTE Technology Standards for All Teachers, and released it as NETS for Teachers. This new version subdivided the Application of Technology in Instruction category into the areas of planning, implementing, and assessing and added a category on the social, ethical, legal, and human issues related to technology use.[4] In November 2001, NETS for Administrators was released.[5] These three sets of standards were revised in latter years: 2007 - NETS for Students, 2008 – NETS for Teachers, 2009 – NETS for Administrators.[6]


NETS for Students[edit]

Skills and knowledge students need to learn effectively and live productively in a digital world. Within NETS for Students there are six Performance Indicators. Each Performance Indicator indicates and outlines what the student should be able to achieve within technological literacy by the completion of a school year. The Performance Indicators are guidelines where the students are aware of the programs goals and what they are attempting to achieve to meet NETS standards.

The Performance Indicators are as follows:

  • Creativity and Innovation: Using creative thinking and innovative technology the students demonstrate and develop models and simulations to explore and identify complex systems and forecast possibilities as well as they use existing knowledge to generate new ideas and creative thoughts.
  • Communication and Collaboration: Students use digital media and environments to collaborate, communicate and interact with other students, teachers and professionals. They also engage in a cultural and global awareness and contribute to project teams to produce original works or solve problems.
  • Research and Information Fluency: Students apply digital tools to plan, organize and gather information, in order to be able to inquire, analyse, organize and evaluate information.
  • Critical Thinking, Problem Solving and Decision Making: Students use critical thinking skills to plan and conduct research, manage projects, solve problems, and make informed decisions using appropriate digital tools and resources.
  • Digital Citizenship: Students demonstrate personal development to be lifelong learners because they are aware of the human, cultural and social issues related to technology and they practise ethical and legal digital behaviour.
  • Technology Operations and Concepts: Students demonstrate a sound understanding of technology concepts, systems, and operations so they are able to select, transfer, understand and troubleshoot various systems and applications productively and effectively.

Here is an example of technologies influence in the classroom post 20th century. How to Bring Our Schools Out of the 20th Century[7]

Educational technology standards are the roadmaps to teaching effectively and growing professionally in an increasingly digital world.

NETS for Teachers[edit]

The program standards for the teachers have been implemented to provide teachers with the effective tools so they are able to engage their students, improve learning environments and their own professional practice as well as provide a positive model for their school community. Teachers should be able to effectively and productively follow and achieve the following five Performance Indicators. The Five Performance Indicators are as follows:

  • Facilitate and Inspire Student Learning and Creativity: Teachers model, support, promote and use their knowledge to provide and facilitate productive technological experiences that advance student learning, creativity, and innovation both face-to-face and virtually. They also promote student reflection and collaborative construction environments.
  • Design and Develop Digital-Age Learning Experiences and Assessment: Teachers design, develop, and evaluate authentic learning experiences and assessments incorporating contemporary tools and resources to maximize content learning in context. They do this by adapting relevant learning experiences to incorporate digital tools, they customize and personalize learning activities to address different learning styles and they provide students with varied and multiple formative and summative assessments.
  • Model Digital-Age Work and Learning: Teachers model, communicate and collaborate with their students, colleagues and school community using current technologies and digital-age media to share and transfer knowledge. They do this by exhibiting their own knowledge, skills, and work processes representative of an innovative professional to a global and digital society.
  • Promote and Model Digital Citizenship and Responsibility: Teachers model and advocate safe teaching and understand the societal global issues of media literacy in an evolving digital world. They address diverse needs of the students, promote digital etiquette, and they exhibit legal and ethical responsibility and respect.
  • Engage in Professional Growth and Leadership: Teachers continuously improve their professional practice, model lifelong learning, and exhibit leadership in their school and professional community by promoting and demonstrating the effective use of digital tools and resources. They do this by reflective practices, participation in local and global learning opportunities, and exhibiting leadership within the technology infusion and incorporation process.[8]

A field trip from Ferryway School, near Boston, to the nation's oldest ironworks is captured with the latest tech, using NETS-S and NETS-T.

NETS for Administrators[edit]

ISTE's NETS for Administrators (NETS•A) are the standards for evaluating the skills and knowledge school administrators and leaders need to support digital age learning, implement technology, and transform the education landscape. Educational Administrators inspire and lead development and implementation of a shared vision for comprehensive integration of technology to promote excellence and support transformation throughout the organization.

1. Visionary Leadership a. Inspire and facilitate STUDENT LEARNING AND CREATIVITY. Teacher uses his knowledge in subject matter, teaching and learning and technology to advance student learning and creativity. (biszay) b. Engage in an ongoing process to develop, implement, and communicate technology-infused strategic plans aligned with a shared vision c. Advocate on local, state and national levels for policies, programs, and funding to support implementation of a technology-infused vision and strategic plan

2. Digital Age Learning Culture Educational Administrators create, promote, and sustain a dynamic, digital-age learning culture that provides a rigorous, relevant, and engaging education for all students. a. Ensure instructional innovation focused on continuous improvement of digital-age learning b. Model and promote the frequent and effective use of technology for learning c. Provide learner-centered environments equipped with technology and learning resources to meet the individual, diverse needs of all learners d. Ensure effective practice in the study of technology and its infusion across the curriculum e. Promote and participate in local, national, and global learning communities that stimulate innovation, creativity, and digital age collaboration

3. Excellence in Professional Practice Educational Administrators promote an environment of professional learning and innovation that empowers educators to enhance student learning through the infusion of contemporary technologies and digital resources. a. Allocate time, resources, and access to ensure ongoing professional growth in technology fluency and integration b. Facilitate and participate in learning communities that stimulate, nurture and support administrators, faculty, and staff in the study and use of technology c. Promote and model effective communication and collaboration among stakeholders using digital age tools d. Stay abreast of educational research and emerging trends regarding effective use of technology and encourage evaluation of new technologies for their potential to improve student learning

4. Systemic Improvement Educational Administrators provide digital age leadership and management to continuously improve the organization through the effective use of information and technology resources. a. Lead purposeful change to maximize the achievement of learning goals through the appropriate use of technology and media-rich resources b. Collaborate to establish metrics, collect and analyze data, interpret results, and share findings to improve staff performance and student learning c. Recruit and retain highly competent personnel who use technology creatively and proficiently to advance academic and operational goals d. Establish and leverage strategic partnerships to support systemic improvement e. Establish and maintain a robust infrastructure for technology including integrated, interoperable technology systems to support management, operations, teaching, and learning

5. Digital Citizenship Educational Administrators model and facilitate understanding of social, ethical and legal issues and responsibilities related to an evolving digital culture. a. Ensure equitable access to appropriate digital tools and resources to meet the needs of all learners b. Promote, model and establish policies for safe, legal, and ethical use of digital information and technology c. Promote and model responsible social interactions related to the use of technology and information d. Model and facilitate the development of a shared cultural understanding and involvement in global issues through the use of contemporary communication and collaboration tools

Examples of Technology for Teachers[edit]

Some examples of technology in the classroom are:

  • Smartboards
  • Computers
  • Voicethread
  • Projectors
  • Skype
  • Google Docs
  • iPads
  • Cell phones

For more examples, see the following link:

Examples of Technology for Students[edit]

Examples of student use of technology in a classroom are:

  • Computers
  • Twitter or Facebook
  • Cameras
  • Video Cameras
  • Photo editing software
  • Cell phones (some school districts may allow, others may not)
  • Printers/Scanners
  • Clickers
  • Tablet/iPad
  • Headphones
  • Google Docs
  • Wiki


  1. ^ NETS Project(2007). National Educational Technology Standards for Students. ISTE. ISBN 978-1-56484-237-4.
  2. ^ NETS Project (2002). Preparing Teachers to Use Technology ISTE. ISBN 978-1-56484-173-5.
  3. ^ a b Roblyer, MD (2000). The National Educational Technology Standards (NETS): A Review of Definitions, Implications, and Strategies for Integrating NETS into K-12 Curriculum. International Journal of Instructional Media. 27(2).
  4. ^ NETS Project (2002). Preparing Teachers to Use Technology ISTE. ISBN 978-1-56484-173-5.
  5. ^ Brooks-Young, Susan (2004). Self-Assessment Activities for School Administrators: A Companion to Making Technology Standards Work for You. ISTE. ISBN 978-1-56484-205-3.
  6. ^ ISTE. "National Educational Technology Standards". Retrieved 2009-07-13. 
  7. ^ ISTE. "The ISTE National Educational Technology Standards (NETS•S) and Performance Indicators for Students" (PDF). Retrieved 2009-07-13. 
  8. ^ ISTE. "The ISTE National Educational Technology Standards (NETS•T) and Performance Indicators for Teachers" (PDF). Retrieved 2009-07-13.