Early Reflections on Teaching and Learning with iPads

Trinity College Foundation Studies has been trialling iPads in the classroom since August 2010. Staff and students in nine subjects have been using the devices for more than two months. We are now at the stage where all participants have been surveyed to capture their initial expectations and to gauge early experiences of using the iPads inside and outside the classroom.

Since the latest survey in October, follow-up meetings with staff have also fleshed out the educational experiences. It’s now possible to make some tentative comments about practical, methodological and pedagogical issues that may be of interest to others who are currently trialling or plan to trial iPads or similar devices.

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Wiki Server

Trinity College has been using MediaWiki in the IT department for a long time now to document tasks that have to be repeated, bugs encountered, bug fixes and so on. When we started the iPad pilot we continued using this wiki for the IT related facets of the project. But, we decided that non IT staff involved in the pilot would also benefit from access to read and edit a wiki. If staff found bugs, then they could create a page on that bug with a workaround. Or, if they found a good app or had a thought on the pilot in general, they would be able to add to the wiki. The version of MediaWiki we have been running in the IT department uses markup language only and is far too intimidating and/or complicated for many computer users. Being a bit of a Mac fan, I wanted to try Mac OS X Server’s Wiki Server as it is attractive to browse and has an easy to use wysiwyg editing interface.

Our Wiki

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