Pepperdine University's Information Technology staff members are working with Pepperdine faculty to assess the effectiveness of the iPad as a learning tool. Beginning with exploratory research in fall 2010, and continuing in spring 2011 and ending with an quasi-experiemental design in fall 2011, this study will compare student learning outcomes in the control and experiment sections for each course. The iPad research team will review feedback from faculty and students involved in the study and assess the impact the iPad has on learning.
The research team is working to answer two specific questions:
- Does the iPad have the potential to enhance students' performance on course learning objectives?
- Can we develop a formula for success?
iPad Workshops for Faculty
Our iPad Research Study will come to a close this December, but the iPads will continue to be used in the classroom to enhance learning. The Technology and Learning group will select faculty to work with in the spring and summer terms and will provide full technical and pedagogical support for the iPads.
This research initiative is being conducted by Information Technology in line with the desire to use technology to purposefully enhance teaching and learning at Pepperdine University. This initiative also coincides with the division's goal to provide 'anytime, anywhere' technological services to the campus community.
What is the iPad Research Study?
In August 2010, Pepperdine University launched a three-term study to assess the iPad's potential in the education sector. The fall 2010 and spring 2011 academic terms were used for exploratory research to inform an experimental research design. An experimental research design will be used in the fall 2011 term to assess the iPad's potential to enhance student learning outcomes.
Throughout each term, this study compares technology use and engagement for students in two sections of the same course; one section is loaned iPads and while the other section uses various computing devices. Undergraduate and graduate courses are included in the study as well a variety of disciplines including religion, math, business, law, and health.
Data is collected throughout each term with pre and post-term student surveys, classroom observations, and focus groups for every iPad and non-iPad course section. The research team also conducts interviews with each participating faculty member after the term to collect anecdotal information to qualify the quantitative results.