ACU brings iPad, Mobile Learning to West Texas middle and high school teachersPosted June 17, 2010
Abilene Christian University is bringing cutting-edge Mobile Learning technology to middle and high schools across West Texas.
ACU's Dr. Kim Pamplin, chair of the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, has worked for the past year to develop a three-week technology program for area teachers using Teacher Quality Grants. ACU has used Teacher Quality Grants to help rural teachers gain access to technology and network with each other since 1990.
Pamplin says this project helps teachers determine whether technology makes a critical difference in the classroom, or is just an added bonus.
"There are some things that are made easier with technology," Pamplin says. "Learning is easier and less frustrating. Plus, iPads are the kind of thing that are exciting to people. When you give them an iPad that is loaded with well-done learningapplications, students are highly motivated to explore and learn."
The summer program for these middle school and high school teachers began June 6. Each teacher received an iPad and is learning ways to use its applications in conjunction with their own curriculum. Middle school teachers also received a GPS system they can use for field trips and other school activities.
During the three-week session, the teachers will participate in innovative chemistry and environmental science projects. One such project will involve the creation and testing of a biodiesel sample.
The Teacher Quality Grant covers the costs of providing technology and benefits for the teachers. Along with the iPad, teachers will receive six graduate credit hours, child care coverage and a small stipend. They also will have the opportunity to develop better learning relationships.
"The real benefit is that they get to interact with other teachers who are faced with the same challenges and have the same goals," Pamplin says.
Read more about ACU's mobile learning program here.
Did you know? COBA in Oxford students are exploring how iPads can be used for research while they consult for marketing firm A.C. Nielsen this summer. Follow their findings by becoming a fan of their Facebook page.