February 13, 2020 4 min read
Shopping for microphoned headsets for your school or classroom? It can feel like you have one of two options: cheap school headsets that don’t work and don’t last or overpriced options that are out of your school’s budget.
But knowing exactly what to shop for can help you find the right balance of functionality and price. Look for these features to make sure your students are getting headsets that have everything they need and nothing they don’t!
Your school headsets will pass through a lot of hands. If you want them to last more than a single school year, you’ll need a sturdy model.
Look for school headsets that are specifically designed for educational or institutional use. Personal headsets aren’t always designed to be worn by multiple people and may wear out sooner. This might be the only option for a tight budget. Be sure to check out school headphone care instructions to get the most out of your school headphones.
This falls under durability, but it’s worth highlighting separately since the first piece to malfunction on headsets is often the cord…especially when you have students’ fidgeting fingers twirling and pulling on them day after day.
The cords of headsets with in-line microphones take even more wear and tear than others. The microphone not only provides another thing to fidget with— it provides another place where the cord could potentially become detached.
A thin or poorly attached cord and easily bend, fray, or detach from the unit, rendering an otherwise perfect headset completely useless. If your budget allows, look for school headsets that have thicker or braided cords.
In general, school headsets tend to be slightly more expensive than school headphones, but you’ll still be able to find affordable options. While you’ll find headsets that range from five to fifty dollars (or hundreds!), the sweet spot for most schools is somewhere in the middle.
Consider how often and for what purposes your students will be using the school headsets as you decide on a budget. For common classroom use, you can find functional, long-lasting option for under $20. For high-stakes use that requires top-of-the-line microphone and audio quality (like foreign language exams with speaking and listening portions), you can consider spending up to $35 per unit. Headsets in this range should last for years and will typically be better at blocking out ambient noise.
Finding plain headphones to fit elementary students can be a challenge, but finding microphoned headsets is even harder. Headsets intended for very small children are often manufactured more like a toy than a teaching tool, meaning they can frequently be low quality and easily breakable.
If you’re looking for headsets for a younger crowd, start with education-focused headset companies. Not only are they more likely to offer sizes for younger kids, but their models will also be designed for the wear and tear of the classroom.
Since multiple people will be using your school headsets, it’s a good idea to have adjustable microphones. Most middle and high school students will be just fine with standard microphone placement, but younger or smaller/larger-than-average students will benefit from adjustable mics.
Whether you’re listening to recorded responses for your foreign language class or corresponding with distance learning students, the last thing you want is scratchy, low-quality audio. Both the microphone and earpieces need to be capable of receiving and delivering clear, crisp sound.
While it may be tempting to opt for the cheapest headsets you can find (especially if you’re a teacher paying out of pocket), ensure that you’re buying something that’s as functional as it is affordable.
Reading customer reviews will give you an idea of the quality you’re getting, but try to find reviews or products that are focused specifically on headsets for educational use. Audiophiles or gamers are likely to be pickier about their sound and voice quality and might skew the ratings for headsets that are otherwise fine for the classroom.
If you use several devices with different inputs in your classroom, invest in a set of adapters for each unit.
While there might be exceptions, most classrooms don’t need these features in their microphoned headsets. Skipping them will help you save some money while still getting exactly what you do need.
If you need affordable, quality headsets for your classroom, we’d love to help you find the perfect solution. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to get in touch with one of our awesome Learning Headphones customer service reps! Please check out some of our other posts on our blog too!
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