Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Spring Students get their ipads!

This semester we gave the students ipads. We wanted to try out this other common mobile device, see what we would need at the college to support them, and get a look at the Apple app store in order to have more ideas for Dave's app class.

So far, so good. Simply the fact that Curtis and I have been through this twice made our first day much more successful. We spent the entire day on the tablets...

...getting students signed up for an apple id, a google account, and an edmodo account. Curtis did a quick lesson in "How to use the ipad" to get everyone up to speed. I felt like everyone was really ready to go home and personalize their devices.

We stumbled upon a sort of mobile LMS called Edmodo www.edmodo.com . It's for K-12, has mobile apps for both apple and android, and seems incredibly user-friendly. We really liked the facebook-style discussion stream where we could post assignments, quizzes, alerts, as well as other typical facebook items.

After playing with it for a few days, we decided to use Edmodo for our courses this semester instead of try to rely exclusively on Angel. We will use Angel for the gradebook and to keep a record of all posted assignments.

Students don't seem particularly excited to have an ipad vs. an acer android tablet, though I will say there didn't seem to be as many "How do I make it do ____" questions as there were with the acers last semester (though that might be that we/Curtis didn't know the acer as well as the ipad). Of 7 students there today, 1 has no smart phone, 3 have iphones, and 3 have android smart phones.  I am going to query them later in the semester regarding which devices they are using to access Edmodo since it is available on every device!

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