Apple in Education Week at Cult of Mac

Cult of Mac ran a series this week looking at the revival of Apple products in education. I recommend you at least read the following:

  1. It’s All About Mobility –  check out the graph at the end showing the decline of Dell and the rise of Apple.
  2. iPads Get Top Grades In Cedars School Pilot Project – overview of the iPad pilot launched by Fraser Speirs.
  3. The Best iOS Apps for Education
  4. iPad May Replace Computers and Textbooks In Schools, Expert Predicts – it is great for reading but also can do writing.

And for a more cynical look at computers in education, read this interview with pioneering computer scientist Alan Kay.

iPads Bring Accessibility to the Disabled at a Far Lower Cost

Link: iPads bring accessibility to the disabled at a far lower cost

tuaw.com compares the iPad to other accessibility devices. I’ve seen an Eco up close and I agree that the iPad has more features by default, runs more reliability, and costs far less than the $7,000 – $15,000 price tag for the Eco. The article suggests that most devices are purposely limited to one function in order to qualify for Medicaid. That is disappointing if true, since limiting an expensive device to one feature seems to work agains accessibility.

“Pupils and teachers will never want a device that’s harder to use than the iPad”

Some pretty safe bets from Fraser Speirs. If we limit the scope of those predictions to education, I mostly agree with him. However, I think that for the foreseeable future we will continue to need more complicated and powerful devices. My colleague who teaches the CAD program at my school could not achieve the same results with iPads. His class will continue to need desktops.

Mobile Learning at a Tipping Point

Link: Mobile Learning at a Tipping Point

Story summarizing findings presented by Project Tomorrow at the Speak Up conference held on October 29, 2010. The study shows that student access to mobile technology in the classroom has tripled in the last three years. Also, 62% of parents surveyed said they would purchase a mobile device for their students if they were allowed to use them in school. The full report is available, but it requires registration on their Blackboard site.