iTunes U for iPad Retools the Learning Experience

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Apr 12, 2001
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In the second half of Apple's education-focused media event today, the company turned its attention to iTunes U, the company's free educational podcast section in the iTunes Store. Eddy Cue took the stage to announce that over 1,000 universities are currently using iTunes U, with the program's content having seen over 700 million downloads to date.




The new iTunes U app advances iTunes U from audio and video lectures to a full-fledged learning app, allowing non-traditional students access to huge amounts of free content but more importantly for Apple, allowing schools to adopt iTunes U as a learning platform.
The all-new iTunes U app lets teachers create and manage courses including essential components such as lectures, assignments, books, quizzes and syllabuses and offer them to millions of iOS users around the world.
Courses are created via the iTunes U Course Manager, a web-based tool that allows teachers to build a course that includes a syllabus, handouts, quizzes, and other items. Course materials are hosted by Apple and available to anyone taking the course -- by default, courses are open and available to anyone, though it appears schools can restrict their courses to only their students.

For users, iTunes U for iOS has more than 100 courses already optimized for iOS, with more on the way. A quick perusal of the app shows classes from Yale, Duke, MIT, and Stanford -- including Paul Hegarty's well-regarded iPad and iPhone App Development course [Direct Link].



iTunes U lets you take a complete course on your iPad. View the course overview, instructor biography, and course outline. Read posts and keep track of your completed assignments. Watch videos directly within the app, read books, and view all your course notes in one place. Receive push notifications alerting you to new posts from the instructor. And iCloud keeps your notes, highlights, and bookmarks up to date on all your devices.
iTunes U is a free download for iPad and iPhone on the App Store [Direct Link].

Article Link: iTunes U for iPad Retools the Learning Experience
 

Reach9

macrumors 68020
Aug 17, 2010
2,403
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In America
At it's current form, this will not be a big impact to the education industry compared to iBooks 2.
I can only see this working for small and free courses, mainly in wealthy private schools.
 

Blakjack

macrumors 68000
Jun 23, 2009
1,796
309
So its a lot like Blackboard right? A problem I have currently is accessing all of Blackboard features on my iPad. It sucks half the time. This feature needs to go mainstream ASAP!!
 
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shiseiryu1

macrumors 6502a
Sep 30, 2007
529
289
Sounds great!

This sounds great...especially if it can replace Blackboard/Moodle. Blackboard is hugely expensive (and not even that great) and Moodle is open-source which means it looks like crap and is not user-friendly. This could be huge for Apple...very smart!
 

Cougarcat

macrumors 604
Sep 19, 2003
7,766
2,546
This could be promising. If Apple adds real course management, with attendance and grades, and a web interface, it could take off. I can't stand using Blackboard. It is the bane of my existence.
 

Kaibelf

Suspended
Apr 29, 2009
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Silicon Valley, CA
At it's current form, this will not be a big impact to the education industry compared to iBooks 2.
I can only see this working for small and free courses, mainly in wealthy private schools.
Huh? It's giving free courses from places like Stanford, and those courses are hardly "small." Many people can't afford $120k to go to college, and this helps everyone access information. If that's not an impact then I don't know what is.
 

SKTHEPREZ

macrumors member
Jan 5, 2012
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0
570, PA
At it's current form, this will not be a big impact to the education industry compared to iBooks 2.
I can only see this working for small and free courses, mainly in wealthy private schools.
Have you ever participated in post-secondary education? Taken quizzes, tried to organize 15 credits worth of courses notes in a tablet notebook or annoyiyng tack folders? Forgot your one piece of notes, or had them unorganized? Well, if this was around when i was in college, I can bet I'd have been a better student. Maybe its just me?
And in wealthy private schools? It would benefit large public schools, such as Penn State where i attended, and they needed 2-3 teacher's assistance just to pass out the notes, quizzes, study guides etc to the 300-400 kids in a single class.
 

ironsienna

macrumors regular
Oct 28, 2010
215
0
Im so excited! I really can't wait to get it in my hands and see how it works on me..
 

SKTHEPREZ

macrumors member
Jan 5, 2012
51
0
570, PA
huh?

So every student will be required to buy an iPad?
An iPad 1 used is about $200-300. A college education costs $10,000 in community college now nearly. How can you even ask a silly question like that, when it would save $200-300 just in paper and pens and notebooks and folders/printer ink?
 

jayducharme

macrumors 68040
Jun 22, 2006
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The thick of it
This could be promising. If Apple adds real course management, with attendance and grades, and a web interface, it could take off. I can't stand using Blackboard. It is the bane of my existence.
I have to use Moodle, and it's even worse. I teach media, and I'm unable to make my courses look like anything more than text strings. This could be a really useful alternative, if that course management component were integrated.
 

iSee

macrumors 68040
Oct 25, 2004
3,525
253
This is great.

iTunes U was already an amazing resource with some world-class content available for free download. An app to pull together the resources is an important improvement.

This is very nice.
 

emvath

macrumors regular
Jan 5, 2009
211
172
An iPad 1 used is about $200-300. A college education costs $10,000 in community college now nearly. How can you even ask a silly question like that, when it would save $200-300 just in paper and pens and notebooks and folders/printer ink?
Is this not for k-12 too? I'm confused.
 

bbeagle

macrumors 68040
Oct 19, 2010
3,377
2,567
Buffalo, NY
This is very nice.
I agree.

I took the Stanford iPhone courses in the past. It was relatively simple to subscribe in iTunes to all the videos, and get the slides as well.

I just tried the iTunes U app on my iPad, and wow! This brings everything together so much cleaner. There's a 'posts' section which puts all the lectures and slides together along with assignments, and information about each one. You can see how far you've progressed, and it lets you take notes as well. It's the same content, but presented much more cohesive and easier to understand. I can see this concept taking off!

----------

And with a battery in what condition?
I use my original iPad 1 (bought on launch day of 3G) every day for about 10 hours a day. I use it at work listening via 3G to Pandora, reading/writing emails, watching videos such as TWiT, hockey games....

and the battery still lasts 8 hours on a charge.

I've only lost about 2 hours from the original 10 hours I got since I bought it. I can't say the same thing about my 2006 MacBook, which is on it's 3rd battery and still loses it's life every charge.
 

rorschach

macrumors 68020
Jul 27, 2003
2,064
587
This could be promising. If Apple adds real course management, with attendance and grades, and a web interface, it could take off. I can't stand using Blackboard. It is the bane of my existence.
This. I'd love to see iTunes U become a full-featured app that has, in addition to courses prepared by schools, features for students to add their own content, notes, etc. Plus as you mentioned, the ability to put in grades, assignments, etc. And it could all be synced with iCloud.
 

lord patton

macrumors 65816
Jun 6, 2005
1,050
4
Chicago
Given that:

1)iBook textbooks only work on iPad (not Mac, not PC)
2)iTunes U app only works on iPad (not Mac, not PC)
3)iBook textbooks must be exclusive to the iBook platform

it's clear that Apple sees a world—and is driving toward it as fast as it can—in which every student has an iPad.

Expect very aggressive pricing on the iPad 2, after the iPad 3 comes out.
 

SKTHEPREZ

macrumors member
Jan 5, 2012
51
0
570, PA
...

Is this not for k-12 too? I'm confused.
I'd assume possibly? But all that is mentioned is Stanford, Duke, MIT, etc. What I'm saying is, some of these schools cost nearly $250,000 after school, books, room and board. So being requried to buy an iPad is not even a dent in that. Even community college can cost $10,000.

I know that the first half of the event, iBooks 2, was targeted at all groups, it'll be cool to watch and see how this works out.