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THE PIPELINE: The Proof Is in the Podding

By Stephen Abram - Posted May 1, 2006
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I've been following the Duke University experiment of providing iPods to all students. It's pretty interesting and a marvel in the law of unintended consequences. The evaluation report on Duke's 2004/05 academic uses of iPods initiative is available, and it's free. It's a fairly concise report and worth the read. I've included the link in the sidebar.

It must have been a bit of a success, since they're continuing it in a modified form. What I found most interesting was the surprising and innovative ways (though logical in hindsight) that professors and students found to use the devices. As a lesson-reviewing tool (even while exercising or multitasking), it seems more than adequate. It also seems to nicely align with students' natural behaviors rather than insist they align their behaviors with uncomfortable technologies.

Everyone Should Learn the Way I Learn?

There were the usual shirty comments from lecturers who feared some students would not attend class and just listen to downloaded lectures while jogging. I have to say that if they're providing so little interactivity or visuals in their lectures and so carefully avoiding any Socratic dialogue with the students, then how is a recording any worse or better than being there? Perhaps the competition will sharpen up those who fear it! Some of the comments I read were classic. To paraphrase, "Everyone should learn the way I learn."

This article is available in its entirety in a variety of formats — Preview, Full Text, Text+Graphics, and Page Image PDF — on a pay-per-view basis, courtesy of ITI's InfoCentral. CLICK HERE.

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