Best Strategies for Using iPads as an Engaging Teaching Tool

This document outlines 8 strategies for using the iPad. The iPad is a type of tablet computer that can perform such functions as taking pictures, playing music, recording and viewing videos, and browsing the Internet. Features of the iPad can greatly be enhanced by installing third party applications which can be downloaded from Apple’s App Store. These features can be commandeered by faculty members and teachers for instructional purposes. This documents contains third party applications links that will take you to App Store if you are browsing this document on an iPad.

Strategy #1: Record Your Lectures Anywhere, Anytime

You may want to record your lectures for your online, hybrid or face-to-face courses. iPad is designed to be portable. It is light and its battery can last ten hours. This mean that you may easily take your iPad anywhere you go. iPad is also equipped with built in front and back cameras and microphones. Thus an iPad can easily be employed for recording lectures.

Assume that you are away and attending a conference. You may use your iPad to record your lecture in your hotel room using your iPad and upload it to YouTube or or other file hosting or video hosting services easily for your students to review.

App to power this strategy:

Strategy #2: Create Interactive Course Materials with iBooks Author

With iBooks Author, you create interactive multi-touch textbooks that may include embedded images, movies, and links to the Internet resources. You may also use various templates to create great looking textbooks for iPad to keep your students engaged.

App to power this strategy:

Other alternatives for the iPad

You may create elegant course materials with interactive elements like mastery check quizzes with iBooks Author then you may upload these materials to your web site, blog or LMSs such as D2L, BlackBoard or Moodle for your students to see.

Strategy #3: Hold Virtual Office Hours to Review Students’ Work

You may hold office hours via iPad. Virtual office hours can be conducted for your online, hybrid or face-to-face courses. SInce iPad is an portable device, you may hold these office hours anywhere and anytime. This way, wherever you are, you can connect with your students and review and discuss students work that they submitted.

Students can work in groups to complete an assignment and you and each group can meet online to discuss and monitor their progress. Students may use their iPads or computers to connect.

Apps to power this strategy:

Strategy #4: Collaborate with your Colleagues in Scholarly Activities to Brainstorm Together

Faculty members and teachers often writes papers or work on a project together. Using your iPad, you may collaborate with other scholars in your field. You can integrate computers, iPads, and whiteboarding tools to facilitate your discussions.

Apps to power this strategy

Strategy #5: Prepare for Your Classes on the Go

 iPads can be used as a portable educational repository for the classes you teach. You may also use cloud file hosting services to access your materials anywhere. You may view, read, watch, annotate, and create your course materials on your iPad to get ready for your classes.

Apps to Power This Strategy

Strategy #6: Interact with your Online Students by Providing Them Audio and Video Feedback

Lack of interaction and direct student and teacher contact can be frustrating in online classes. Students may see the feedback you are providing distant. One way to overcome this is to leave students with audio or video comments. Use your iPads to give students audio and visual feedbacks that can viewed as more personal.

Apps to Power This Strategy

Strategy  #7: Transform your Scholarly, Service and Administrative Activities

Faculty members and teachers are expected to have scholarly, service and administrative activities. These activities can be facilitated by using the iPad. Use your iPad to take notes, check and send emails, record voice memos and keep track of your daily activities by using the built in Calendar app on your iPad.

Strategy #8: Transform Your Teaching Activities

The basics: There are more 300,000 apps available to choose from. These apps can be used to creating interactive learning environments to enhance student learning. There are thousands of educational apps available for students and teachers in any level from early childhood to higher education covering everything from Science to Music.  We have another 10 strategies series document describing some of the types of activities and strategies in integrating the iPad into teaching and learning activities. (10 Strategies for Engaging Learners with iPads)

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