The School of Medicine at Stanford University has adopted Apple’s iPad, providing the device to all incoming first year medical students and Master of Medicine students.
The school cited four reasons behind the new program, including student readiness, noting that iPad “creates opportunities for efficient, mobile, and innovative learning.”
Stanford also noted “the flexibility of iPad technology,” noting that “iPad allows students to view and annotate course content electronically, facilitating advance preparation as well as in-class note-taking in a highly portable, sharable and searchable format.”
Access to information and “information literacy” was also a consideration, with the school pointing out that “students will be able to easily access high-quality information at any place, at any time (for example, images from textbooks on digital course reserve, image databases, journal articles, Lane Library’s various search tools, etc.)”
A fourth rationale was Stanford’s intent to go green, “replacing printed syllabi with PDFs is in line with the Sustainable Stanford initiative, which aims to build sustainable practices into every aspect of campus life.”
Due to their extended relationship, we’re not surprised that Apple and Stanford are able to build a relationship quickly. One of the few other places in the world which has managed a successful relationship with Apple is our own University of Ulster. iPad is currently undergoing a pilot deployment project within the University of Ulster and I know there are lecturers who are hotly anticipating the results hoping that the device will be verified for use by the University as a teaching tool.