• Every Student use of iPads: A Vade Mecum for Students' Active Learning

      Whalley, W. Brian; France, Derek; Mauchline, Alice; Welsh, Katharine E.; Park, Julian R.; University of Sheffield, University of Chester, University of Reading (Cambridge Scholars, 2017-01-01)
      The iPad has evolved into a very capable computer with high processor power, enhanced screen resolution, and good battery life. However, this capability is still largely untapped in higher education by students or staff where there is still reliance on a Victorian higher educational system; that is, content delivery by lectures and assessment by examination. Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) are, mostly, a modernisation of such content delivery. However, active learning , coupled with increased availability of cloud services and iPads/smartphones, provides opportunities for students to use practical mobile devices anywhere. Such ubiquity allows tutors to promote active learning in any location, even in the lecture theatre. We examine some of the practicalities and pedagogy behind this trend and suggest ways in which students’ educational experiences are enhanced via active learning with iPads, whether cloud linked or not. Involved, active learning promotes digital information and literacy skills into the curriculum as well as integrates knowledge bases via an Internet of Everything. Moreover, employability skills can be incorporated into the learning experiences and the personalisation of iPads can accommodate the needs of students with mobility and specific difficulties. Tutors seem reluctant to use iPads in educational environments. We expect this to diminish as students become empowered to use smart-cloud technologies to promote their educational needs. The iPad and its kin can be thought of as a vade mecum, enhancing everyone’s learning in a fourth dimension and can fit into modern pedagogies.
    • iPad use in Fieldwork: Formal and informal use to enhance pedagogic practice in a Bring Your Own Technology world.

      Whalley, W. Brian; France, Derek; Mauchline, Alice; Welsh, Katharine E.; Park, Julian R.; University of Sheffield; University of Reading; University of Chester (Cambridge Scholars, 2014-03-31)
      We report on use of iPads (and other IOS devices) for student fieldwork use and as electronic field notebooks. We have used questionnaires and interviews of tutors and students to elicit their views on technology and iPad use for fieldwork. There is some reluctance for academic staff to relinquish paper notebooks for iPad use, whether in the classroom or on fieldwork. Students too are largely unaware of the potential of iPads for enhancing fieldwork. Apps can be configured for a wide variety of specific uses that make iPads useful for educational as well as social uses. Such abilities should be used to enhance existing practice as well as make new functionality. For example, for disabled students who find it difficult to use conventional note taking iPads can be used to develop student self-directed learning and for group contributions. The technology becomes part of the students’ personal learning environments as well as at the heart of their knowledge spaces – academic and social. This blurring of boundaries is due to iPads’ usability to cultivate field use, instruction, assessment and feedback processes. iPads can become field microscopes and entries to citizen science, and we see the iPad as the main ‘computing’ device for students in the near future. As part of Bring Your Own Technology/Device the iPad has much to offer, although both staff and students need to be guided in the most effective use for self-directed education via development of personal learning Environments.