Enter a Bay Path classroom of first-year students and there are desks and tables heaped with coffee mugs, backpacks, an occasional book, and an iPad in the hands of each student.
The professor stands in front of the classroom and doesn’t point to a blackboard, but rather taps on the iPad and a screen in the front of the class pops up with a question posed on a recent reading assignment for a textbook available only online. Each student types in an answer on their iPad. Using a special app for mobile devices, the professor asks for answers, and a student’s response—almost magically—appears on the screen. The student leads the discussion and the conversation—the real learning—begins. Welcome to the new classroom revolution.
|“Fundamentally, we are dramatically changing how students learn in a very intentional, very focused way,” states Dr. Charlotte Briggs, Director of Teaching and Learning Support Services. “For example, in the past students may have listened to a lecture and taken notes, but now with the iPad they can listen to pre-recordings of a lecture by the professor, perhaps even replaying certain sections to familiarize themselves with a concept, and then come to class and engage in active learning. What does this mean? When students are engaged in active learning they have a deeper understanding, and, over time, they retain much of the material. Lecturing, by and large, has proven to be the least effective way to teach in the classroom. This is just one of the conditions of learning we are changing to teach the digitally-savvy students of today.”
How is Professor Mennella using the iPad?