Illinois Institute of Technology will provide all incoming, first-year undergraduate students with Apple iPads as part of an initiative to integrate new technologies into the classroom and foster educational innovation among faculty and students.
Educational applications for iPad, such as eBooks, Blackboard Mobile Learn, and iTunes University will empower IIT students with engaging tools that will enhance their educational experience. IIT students and faculty will also develop new applications that will increase classroom interactivity and collaboration.
IIT is at the forefront of a new age of technology innovation in a variety of ways. In the past year, the university introduced some of the nation's first courses devoted to the development of mobile applications. The university also recently opened a new 13,000 square foot facility called the Idea Shop located in IIT's University Technology Park. The Idea Shop will be the home of the Interprofessional Projects Program (IPRO), where students from all disciplines collaborate in teams to solve real-world problems, some of which turn into entrepreneurial ventures through the Knapp Entrepreneurship Center, which helps students take their ideas and products from the classroom to the marketplace. The Idea Shop includes space for scientific computing and visualization, engineering graphics, mobile app development, team-based idea generation and communication, and a state-of-the-art machine shop filled with rapid-prototyping equipment.
"University education is much different today as compared to even ten years ago," said IIT Provost Alan Cramb. "Students live in a world where technology is seamlessly integrated into virtually every aspect of their lives, where information and collaboration are available anywhere, anytime. IIT is committed to providing students with the tools and support to thrive in a constantly evolving technological landscape."
Beyond the use of iPad devices for educational purposes in and out of the classroom, IIT will release a university app for iPhone/iPod and iPad that provides students and visitors with access to news, events, maps, course listings, and more. The application will also enable the university to push emergency alerts directly to iPod/iPhone/iPad devices, enhancing the existing emergency alert capability through SMS text email, and voice messages.
Founded in 1890, IIT is a Ph.D.-granting university with more than 7,700 students in engineering, sciences, architecture, psychology, design, humanities, business and law. IIT's interprofessional, technology-focused curriculum is designed to advance knowledge through research and scholarship, to cultivate invention improving the human condition, and to prepare students from throughout the world for a life of professional achievement, service to society, and individual fulfillment.