Andrea Simon

Date of Award

January 2021

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Bonni Gourneau


This research explores potential benefits and challenges associated with smartphone use amongst students in the high school classroom and policy considerations for the management of these devices. Managing student usage of smartphones in the classroom can be a complex challenge. Outside influences have infiltrated the learning space like never before, and student access to resources and distractions multiplies daily. Students need support and guidance in learning how to effectively manage their devices as they face life in the age of technology. Likewise, teachers need support in creating and applying effective policies and strategies to manage these devices in the classroom. In this dissertation, relevant literature is reviewed, investigating the impact of smartphones on the changing learning environment and learners' expectations regarding technology use and possible solutions for smartphone utilization and policy deliberations. The primary goals of this study include equipping educators with knowledge of existing research and a set of resources to help maximize the benefits and minimize the detriments of student smartphone usage in the modern classroom. The methodology for this study involved a qualitative, participatory action research study that followed the inquiry process to inform practice. Key findings included the importance of involving and motivating students in the process and recognizing that teachers need various options for managing smartphones in the classroom; a one-size-fits-all model will not suffice, and adaptability is crucial for success.