I can finally post about this.
Seton Hill University will give a new Apple iPad
to every full-time student in fall 2010.
The word went out on the SHU campus about an important announcement. The room was packed.
I’m hoping to hear details about faculty access to iPads. The presentation sold the iPad as a superior alternative to heavy textbooks.
I was hanging around after the event, listening to the university president answer clarifying questions from a reporter. When the question was, “Will faculty members get iPads,” the president, knowing that I am a faculty representative on the academic technology committee, turned to me.
I said that at a recent meeting, I pointed out that, if the university wants to encourage faculty members to assign e-books instead of print, the faculty members will need to have iPads, so that they can make informed decisions about when and/or whether to prefer an ebook to a print book.
A little later, I asked some of the tech people… so far, there is no official “yes” or “no” answer about iPads for faculty.
Note that the iPads are for full-time students… part-time students who don’t have their own iPads may be at a disadvantage.
According to the bookstore, textbook orders for the fall are due in about 2 weeks. Overall, I’m excited for the students and for the school.
Whether the iPads get fully integrated in the classroom environment is only part of the picture, since the overall technology plan also includes laptops and scores of high-speed WiFi access points.