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iDo or iDon't ‐ Using Tablets in the Classroom - Course Technology Computing Conference
Presenter: Lucy Parker, California State University, Northridge
myCSUNtablet Initiative is a partnership of California State University, Northridge and Apple, Inc. that seeks to reduce the cost and increase the quality of learning materials for students. Participating students will use iPads and gain immediate access to e-books and related e-learning materials in a suite of courses in select majors. Participating faculty will receive an iPad and help from professional course designers who understand the relation among effective teaching, creative use of authoring tools, and accessible design. Why CSUN? The academic plans and IT Vision@2015 have anticipated a widening deployment of portable devices and cloud technology for teaching and learning. Faculty already are using such strategies to engage students with different styles and paces for learning. CSUN students are urban commuters, tech-savvy, and on tight budgets. Portability, cost control, and media-enriched content that can be personalized are their common expectations. Why Apple? Many companies make tablets; several produce and solicit applications but few have thought as holistically as Apple. They are sensitive to users’ preferences and have created a system that integrates devices, applications, authoring tools, repositories, and consultation. We at CSUN can benefit from progressive, coherent thinking as we re-think course design and delivery. Why now? At CSUN, the largest college has issued iPads to the faculty, as have departments in other colleges. The device has become the industry standard in nearby K-12 and helping professions, with whom we place interns and graduates. And the governor signaled in the budget an interest in supporting technological solutions for persistent problems in access, cost, and completion in higher education. Finally, the surge in hybrid courses and e-books that our faculty author indicates that CSUN has reached a tipping point for strategic change. An iPad-centric curriculum also offers some exciting possibilities to transform information delivery as well as student participation. Like all pedagogy, it can be a positive and even progressive form of education. Or not, depending on how the actual curriculum is designed and implemented. Professors need to change their archaic views on attention spans and realize that students and society in general are integrating the digital world into the real world. For better or worse, it’s inevitable and professors need to play along. This lecture will discuss TOP (10-20) iPad uses in the classrooms but also discusses concerns on standards of teaching and learning and if low-cost faculty-generated etextbooks are a real match to top quality publisher generated traditional books/ebooks.