Exploring iPads as Teaching and Learning Tools

Facilitated by Scott Cohen (English), this Faculty Learning Community is meant to give the growing number of iPad-users among our faculty the opportunity to explore how the iPad can be used as a teaching and learning tool. Faculty at any level of experience are invited to apply, from those just starting to use iPads to those who have already incorporated them into their teaching or scholarship.

professor holding iPadOverview

This FLC will explore the meaning and potential of mobile learning technologies for faculty and students alike. We will ask whether we can successfully leverage the ubiquity of mobile devices to help our students be active and critical producers of knowledge and not just mindless consumers of information.

For instance, can mobile devices like iPads allow us to construct new kinds of assignments and learning experiences? Is there the potential for students to pursue "fieldwork" in disciplines not usually associated with this approach to gathering and studying information? Can we channel our students' social media habits into academic and intellectual inquiry? Can iPads help us capture and extend the spontaneous interactions of a classroom discussion into sustained and even transformative experiences beyond the traditional classroom?

For a basic introduction to the iPad as a teaching and learning tool, see this informational handout from Apple. 

Expectations and Benefits

Participants are expected to:

  • participate in a one-day summer workshop hosted by Apple 
  • participate in FLC meetings every other week during fall semester 2014 
  • submit a final report on their FLC experience and any plans for incorporating the iPad into future courses

Participants who do not already own an iPad will have the option to use $300 of their faculty development funds to purchase their own iPad or to borrow one from the College for up to two years. Participants will also receive:

  • a $25 gift card to the iTunes store for purchasing apps
  • free Apple training
  • the opportunity to apply to teach a fully-supported iPad course in spring 2015 or fall 2016 (in which all students will be lent an iPad for the semester)