Colleges continue to embrace tablet computers.
Starting in the fall of 2013, all freshmen enrolling in Florida's Lynn University will be required to purchase Apple's iPad mini, according to the institution's website. Lynn's decision to embrace the popular tablet makes it the latest school to use the iPad for instructional purposes, and guarantees that its students will receive a truly modern college experience.
One of Many Schools
Lynn is far from the first institution to see the educational benefits of the iPad, and it is not destined to be the last either. In recent years, several colleges and universities have piloted various programs that equip students with their own tablet for different reasons.
For example, all new, full-time students who enroll in Pennsylvania's Seton Hill University are given an iPad, the school's website states. Degree seekers are free to keep the unrestricted device, which is initially owned by the university, at all times and use it for class work. Similarly, in a 2011 press release, the Illinois Institute of Technology announced that it would supply first-year undergraduates with iPads.
Tablets to Benefit Lynn Students in Many Ways
For Lynn officials, taking one step into the future with its new iPad mini program will translate to a world of benefits for students, both academically and financially.
"After two years of research and successful pilot programs, we are putting a transformational learning companion in our students' hands that will deliver our core curriculum in a rich environment, allowing our students to engage with the content in interactive ways," said Kevin M. Ross, Lynn's president, as quoted by the university's website. "And, this will save them up to 50% off what it would cost for just the core curriculum textbooks alone."
Incoming bachelor's degree seekers will be required to purchase an iPad mini that comes preloaded with Lynn's Dialogues of Learning core curriculum, iTunes U courses and other apps and materials freshmen will need. Overall, students will pay $475 for the device, which normally costs anywhere between $329 and $659, depending on its model and features, according to the Apple Store's website.
Lynn's ability to support a campus filled with tablet-using students was made possible by its role as the host school of the final 2012 presidential debate, as the institution needed to strengthen its digital infrastructure in preparation of the major event.