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Maryville U Student iPad Program Boots Up Professional Development

A 5,000-student St. Louis university is ramping up a new tablet program. Starting this fall all traditional, first-year freshmen and all School of Education sophomores at Maryville University will be receiving Apple iPads "loaded" with class materials. Last December full-time faculty and some staff began receiving iPads as well in order to participate in training activities.

The "digital world" initiative will deliver two weeks of paid professional development to instructors, organized by Maryville's Finch Center for Teaching and Learning. The first week of training will take place in August; a second week will be held in May.

The first round of device integration is taking place in 16 different courses, including 100- and 200-level classes in business, English, health professions, psychology and education.

"This is a significant investment in faculty teaching and student learning. Our commitment to innovative pedagogy and facilitating multiple student learning styles is a strategic priority at Maryville University," said President Mark Lombardi in a prepared statement. "The initial cost of the commitment is $450,000 and it will grow over time."

"We are no longer keepers of content in our classrooms," added Lombardi. "Our role is to facilitate the student's journey and their application of the knowledge they gain. Our commitment to professional development means our faculty are well prepared to meet the challenge of this shifting role and provide students with exactly what they need in order to achieve academic and ultimately professional success."

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal, Campus Technology and Spaces4Learning. She can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter @schaffhauser.

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