June 20, 2005 10:14 AM PDT

Duke's free iPod program has mixed results

Related Stories

Photo: iPods on campus

April 6, 2005

Duke puts restrictions on free iPod program

April 6, 2005

Big tech on campus

September 6, 2004
The university that gave each of its incoming first-year students an iPod has evaluated the success of the pilot program--and declared that the results were mixed.

iPods at Duke

Duke University gave all of its 1,650 freshmen the Apple Computer music player, as well as a voice recorder, in autumn 2004 to "encourage creative uses of technology." One year later, the university has found that 60 percent of the students used the device to record academic material, while 28 percent used the device for storage.

"Initial planning for academic iPod use focused on audio playback; however, digital recording capabilities ultimately generated the highest level of student and faculty interest," according to the report released last week by the university's Center for Instructional Technology.

Humanities students, particularly those studying music and foreign languages, made the most use of the devices, though the whole first year of engineering students had to use the device in a project for their computational methods class, the report said.

Among the classes that took part in the experiment were those for Spanish, in which students were evaluated on iPod recordings of themselves speaking the language. Electrical and computing engineering students, meanwhile, used the devices to record pulse rates.

"The iPod increased the frequency and depth of student interaction with audio course content through portable and flexible access offered by the iPod," the report said.

However, some of the iPod-toting students experienced difficulties with their gadgets. Problems with formats and licensing were considered "barriers to adoption." In addition, Duke found a lack of awareness among students as to what to do with the device and a lack of training resources.

The iPod program, which cost the university $500,000 for the academic year, will continue. However, the devices will be distributed only to those taking particular classes.

Jo Best of Silicon.com reported from London.


Join the conversation!
Add your comment
No wonder their tuition is so high. Why is it the schools job to give ipods to freshmen? just like UMD when they tried to sign the school up for iTunes and other store so their students would not pirate. What about the students just following the law.
Posted by (23 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Let's see now....
... if Duke would give eb=very student an iPod, and an laptop, then
all the lectures could be put on DVD's and MP3 files, and the tests
could be done via Acrobat. With that done, Duke could fire all the
professors and most of the TA's (especially the ones who haven't
learned English yet) . Duke's total payroll would cover jsut a
minimal admin staff, plus enough secretaries to handle enrollment
and diplomas.

Sounds like a plan....
Posted by Earl Benser (4310 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Free iPod Legit
For a guide to free ipods check out:
<a class="jive-link-external" href="http://thegratisguide.blogspot.com" target="_newWindow">http://thegratisguide.blogspot.com</a>
Posted by philidias (1 comment )
Reply Link Flag
Daves Guide to Free iPods
Daves Guide to Free iPods
I have created a comprehensive guide to getting a free iPod just to argue against all the free iPod skeptics out there. My site contains everything you want to know, including pictures of MY free iPod. It also features step by step instructions, proof, and a free conga line to help you get started!
Please visit <a class="jive-link-external" href="http://www.davesipodguide.tk" target="_newWindow">http://www.davesipodguide.tk</a> for more details!
Pics of my free iPod are on it too!

<a class="jive-link-external" href="http://www.davesipodguide.tk" target="_newWindow">http://www.davesipodguide.tk</a>
Posted by drezzit (1 comment )
Reply Link Flag
same, just compiled a comprehensive guide http://www3.telus.net/freeipod/
Posted by freeipodrr (1 comment )
Reply Link Flag

Join the conversation

Add your comment

The posting of advertisements, profanity, or personal attacks is prohibited. Click here to review our Terms of Use.

What's Hot



RSS Feeds

Add headlines from CNET News to your homepage or feedreader.