NYU dental students may never again have to worry about missing a word of lectures. As of September 2008, when College of Dentistry professors present lectures, the lesson is automatically recorded digitally and uploaded to the iTunes U section of the iTunes music store. The lectures are available only to NYU College of Dentistry students and faculty.
NYUCD is the first school at NYU to offer students this new technology. "What we've done at NYUCD is a model, in both the physical infrastructure and the faculty/student workflow," says Dr. Elise S. Eisenberg, Director of Dental Informatics and Digital Services at the College. "I predict that this will expand to become the norm across all schools at NYU."
Created in 2006, iTunes U is a software program specifically geared toward assisting the academic development of students through the provision of podcasts and transferable audio files. As the program evolves, more universities are using it as a tool to supplement classes. The digital information network of iTunes increases students' familiarity with class material by enabling them to replay audio clips from previous lectures and upload podcasts directly to their iPods.
"I believe that we can increase interactivity with students during class time by providing material ahead of time for students to review," says Dr. Eisenberg.
Adds Dr. Andrew I. Spielman, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, "It is my firm belief that digital recording of lectures, sound, and video will be the way all education is delivered in the near future. Classrooms will become virtual and asynchronous; iTunes U is a first step in that direction."