Who uses their iPad for class?

Discussion in 'iPad' started by trsblader, Jun 20, 2011.

  1. trsblader macrumors 6502

    May 20, 2011
    This is such a general topic that the search turns up so many threads with most not really having to do with what I am wanting to know. With that said, if anyone does have a link to a similar thread I'm more than open to just a link in your response.

    I was wondering how many people use iPads for classes (college/university mostly). I'm not talking about typing out your thesis paper, or even short essays, but more just taking notes. At my school, most teachers post power points online, so you just need to make side notes, or quick notes about a passage you read in a book. I never mark my books, I write notes. That way I can sell the book later, and can carry just notes instead of a whole book.

    With all the apps like documents to go or google docs, and even stylus apps that let you write things out, I was wondering if anyone is really using it in class, as it seems like a cheaper alternative than getting a laptop (assuming you have a desktop at home). To me, it doesn't seem like a bad idea, especially if you use a bluetooth keyboard, as it appears most will work with a iPad.
  2. AbyssImpact macrumors 6502a

    Aug 6, 2010
    I tried to use it once to take notes on a video we were watching. My teacher came over and told me to give it to him and now it is confiscated. I am in the 7th grade.
  3. trsblader thread starter macrumors 6502

    May 20, 2011
    Fortunately for me, being in college, laptops are perfectly acceptable and encouraged these days :p

    It just seems that if you have a desktop at home, that a 16gb wifi iPad 2+ zaggmate keyboard or any other similar keyboard is a lot cheaper than the base model macbook, macbook pro, or macbook air. Even cheaper if you just get a first generation iPad. Plus you get extremely long battery life.

    It almost seems too good to be true, which is why I was wondering if maybe those apps were really useless because of poor sync options or poor functionality or lack of options. I read that some worked with dropbox but were very slow/poor performing on the iPad.
  4. anti-microsoft macrumors 68000

    Dec 15, 2006
    Edinburgh, Scotland
    I do. You don't really need to use a bluetooth keyboard at all. I use my iPad 2's soft keyboard with the smart cover and it works brilliantly. It maybe difficult for some but personally I can type very quickly on the iPad.

    For note taking, if it's nothing over the top, you can use the built-in notes app. I use Pages just because of the text-formatting options, the ability to export to iDisk and other reasons.

  5. omicron macrumors member

    Jun 20, 2011
    I wish I had an iPad earlier..... Or maybe not. I would have LOVED to take notes with this iPad of mine as well as draw diagrams if necessary.... Oh well. I'll be getting a second chance when I get to grad school :p
  6. trsblader thread starter macrumors 6502

    May 20, 2011
    Good responses. I am strongly considering grabbing a used iPad or iPad 2 for class. As I said, most professors use powerpoint here, so I need it for nothing more than a few ideas I have, questions to ask the professor, or side notes/things from the reading. I hate trying to squeeze things into margins, but also don't feel like wasting more paper than needed. The only exception would be a calc professor, which is definitely a pen and paper class.

    The iPad would blow my laptop battery out of the water, making me not need to get to class 30 minutes early to secure a good spot with an outlet.
  7. taipan61 macrumors 6502

    May 18, 2011
    corner starbucks
    where was this thing when i was in college!? (picture small tape recorders, a TI-30 and a spiral bound notebook...lol)

    I am taking language courses at the local college and find the iPad good to take notes on and all the language apps are just great.
  8. spiderman0616 macrumors 68040


    Aug 1, 2010
    Agreed--I graduated college in 2000, and even then most people didn't even have laptops in lecture halls. I only knew a couple of students that had their own cell phones. And this was a private school, so I'm sure a lot of students came from families that could afford these things.

    College would have been so much easier if I had an iPad at the time. Throw some textbooks on there, get a good notetaking app, and you're all set. I would love to spend a day on a college campus now and see how much more techy it is. I know at my school every student now gets a laptop and they have their choice of Mac or PC. It's built into the tuition.
  9. Dimmick macrumors member


    Jun 15, 2011

    I use my extensively for class. I use Keynote for the powerpoint notes, Pages for typing papers, and Penultimate for taking handwritten notes (definitely get a stylus, otherwise you feel like you're 5 years old). I use a bluetooth keyboard, but unless you take a ton of typed notes you shouldn't need it. I only use the keyboard for typing papers. Anyway, way more portable and longer battery life than a laptop. I have yet to think, "Stupid iPad, I wish I brought my laptop instead!"
  10. seamariners85 macrumors newbie

    Mar 17, 2011
    I've used my iPad for note taking for a semester and a half now and haven't had any difficulties. I found that using the Pages app and wireless BT keyboard was more efficient for note taking than a stylus/note taking app (especially if the teacher speaks quickly), but I'm sure there are many that feel otherwise.

    I did continue to use the stylus/Note Taker HD app for my stats class, since it was quicker to draw out formulas, graphs, etc. than it was to type it.

    Overall I feel like I've benefited from using an iPad for school. My only problem is staying away from the MLB At Bat app during class. :D
  11. seajay96 macrumors 6502

    Jun 26, 2010
    I've used my iPad1 in a master's program for the last year-ish. Predominantly used Goodreader, Evernote, NotetakerHD and WritePad (Eng and Fr).

    I can type pretty quickly on screen and with a bluetooth keyboard, but I've found I retain my notes in my organic-RAM longer if I handwrite them.

    WritePad has the best handwriting recognition and its latest update added Evernote Sync. This is a huge feature; before, I just emailed to Evernote, but full 2-way sync is great :)
  12. trsblader thread starter macrumors 6502

    May 20, 2011
    Seems like a lot of people find it useful for class. Does anyone NOT find it useful?
  13. Ashin macrumors 6502a


    Jun 19, 2010
    I might...

    Going to University in October, and will be picking between a laptop, my iPad or pen and paper :)

    Might leave my laptop in room for typing essays etc, and use iPad for notes/reading notes etc around campus

    BTW, like people said, hand writing and re-typing them up aids memorization
  14. sumone macrumors regular

    Mar 23, 2011
    Well I don't have an iPad at the moment but i'm considering getting one for fall semester. From past experience carrying around a laptop has really put a strain on my back so I hope an iPad 2 can solve this problem.

    However, I don't know how much use I will make of it for note taking. I used to bring my laptop to school for lectures and I noticed that I rarely took notes on it. When ever I took serious notes I pulled out the pen and paper. I would use the laptop to follow power points sometimes, work on online assignments, or just surf. So I would assume that I will probably use the iPad in that same fashion.

    Nothing beats Pen and Paper when note taking, IMO ;)
  15. Roofy. macrumors 6502a

    Jan 24, 2009
    Lol obviously. Youre in middle school. For college it would be fine. If my college professor told me I can't use my iPad as a notebook or tried to take it away I would flip out.
  16. chrono1081 macrumors 604


    Jan 26, 2008
    Isla Nublar
    I have to use my iPad for class! (Well, not HAVE to but its my platform of choice).

    I go to school for game development and I use my iPad to show of my creations.
  17. Sixtafoua macrumors 6502


    May 29, 2009
    Boston, MA
    I'm a high school student, and I use my iPad everyday in class, it works great. I don't need an external keyboard, I've become faster at typing on the iPad than on my iMac's keyboard. I use an app called sundry notes, (free) and it allows you to type, draw, make graphs, etc. and it even has a built-in cloud sync feature. I used my iPad all school year, and I have more than 300 notes. It makes me happy to think that those 300 notes would have been thousands of pieces of paper. (Most notes are 8-10 pages) :)

    The only problem is that other students see the iPad as a gaming device, not a note-taking device. When I'm in class, people constantly ask me if they can play angry birds on my iPad. It gets really annoying, but that probably wears off after high school as kids get more mature.
  18. henry72 macrumors 65816


    Jun 18, 2009
    New Zealand
    I goto the lecture with my iPad everyday, I found it really useful and handly to use. I use Pages for notes, Keynote for the lecture point point and presentation.

    This became my daily main computer in my life. :D
    My previous post about the iPad 2


  19. Firen macrumors regular


    Jun 15, 2009
    Vienna, Austria
    I'm in med school and we have millions of PDFs/presentations online and I love using my iPad for that. I can look at the slide and add notes to it. In anatomy/histology class I did try to draw organs and cells on it, which at first didn't work out at all, but I'm getting better at it. No more carrying around 10 different pens!

    I either took my laptop along, which is just too heavy and also doesn't allow me to carry any books (at least not my big books) with me because my bag is just not big enough...
    Or I printed out everything, made some notes on the pages and in the end I just had hundreds of pages which were all mixed up and I ended up not being able to study properly after all.
  20. biodigitaljazz macrumors member

    Jun 6, 2011
    Man, if you don't like the weight of a laptop, but are interested in an iPad, check out the MacBook Air. It's near iPad-sized, but has all the power of a laptop. I plan on using one for taking notes at University. They're incredibly portable, and apparently, you can't tell from lifting a backpack whether or not it is in the bag.
  21. Dr Kevorkian94, Jun 21, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2011

    Dr Kevorkian94 macrumors 68020

    Jun 9, 2009
    SI, NY
    all the other high schools in my area are starting to use them (actually the schools are putting it in the tuition, i guess its good because its an excuse to get an ipad). my dean of academics said he would love it but it would cause problems. im assuming its because there is a good portion of dummies in the school that will look up porn and break them and steal them. even if i could just bring mine in i would be happy. i don't think next year in my computer programming class next year i can bring my own computer, we will probably use the ones the NYC department of ed provides. but i would love to use my iPad to at least take notes.

    but it depends on personal preference and depends on what classes you will take, lu just have to know the differences in abilities each apple product has and see if it meets what you and your class requires. like next year if i was able to use my ipad, to program i would need a laptop because i cant on an iPad.
  22. trsblader thread starter macrumors 6502

    May 20, 2011
    Thanks for all the input everyone. I think I've made the decision to grab an iPad 2 for fall semester and will check out all the apps you guys listed as well. Thanks a lot everyone!
  23. jsan1 macrumors member

    Nov 30, 2010
  24. Mainsail macrumors 6502a

    Sep 19, 2010
    The MBA is indeed a great machine. However, it cost about twice as much as an iPad (base models), weighs about twice as much, and has half the battery life. An iPad + Mac mini cost about the same as an 11.6" MBA with a decent amount of storage. Most people with Laptops have a monitor and keyboard, so that is a push.

    More and more, folks are figuring out that they don't need all of that Laptop power for their mobile computing. It really is an individual thing based upon your needs. Also, I believe you can make either setup work for you.
  25. biodigitaljazz macrumors member

    Jun 6, 2011
    Yeah, tbh, I wrote this a few hours ago, and now, after reading some other iPad threads on here, I might opt for a PC-netbook and an iPad 2. But I'm also a really fickle guy who's changed theoretical computer setups for college like a dozen times, so we'll see how I feel tomorrow :D Honestly, the iPad does seem really sweet.

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