Mobile devices have revolutionized the way people work and play, and are now doing the same for how we teach and learn. Two weeks ago at TwTT we heard about the Yale School of Medicine’s remarkable initiative to eliminate paper in the classroom by issuing iPads to all students. Last week, Julie Newman described how the unique form factor and interface of the iPad can enrich assignments and improve participation. Now, in this week’s TwTT the series on mobile technology concludes with a panel of students from the Wires Crossed internship, here to talk to us about how they incorporate mobile technology into their daily lives.
Emmanuel Quartey, Architecture ’12, set the tone of the panel when, while clutching his iPad, he said “I shudder to think what I would have accomplished at Yale if I had owned this device my freshman year.” While some of the students felt more strongly about the importance of mobile technology, all of them agreed that the iPads and smartphones they were issued through the internship had dramatic effects on their studies.
So what is Wires Crossed? Originally “my mobile year,” this internship program initially sought to peer into the life of mobile technology use by students, but quickly morphed into a report on the pulse of technology on campus. Behind the scenes, 5 students, Austin Berhadt, ’12; Salvador Fernandez, ’13; Henry Furman, ’14; Emmanuel Quartey, ’12; and Sara Stalla, ’13, were issued iPads and smartphones and asked to report back regularly on when they were using the devices and how. This report came in the form of a Tumblr based blog and a Twitter feed, both of which picked up more interest from undergraduates than had been expected.