Teaching and learning with iTunes U
Types of resources available
The resources in iTunes U are free and can be downloaded without logging in with an iTunes account, so no purchase from Apple is necessary to access these materials.
- Collections — themed resources in audio, video, pdf or ebook format
- Courses — complete units with learning aims/objectives, a clear structure and a narrative of 'posts’ providing a context for a range of learning resources, including audio, video, pdf, ebook, iBook (interactive book), web links, and other files/documents such as Word or Excel. NOTE: Courses can only be viewed on an iPad.
Students: using iTunes U in your LEARNING
On iTunes U, thousands of free resources for hundreds of subjects are available from top universities around the world which you can use to explore your subject.
- With your PC or Mac computer/laptop you use the iTunes Store to access iTunes U.
- With an Apple mobile device (iPad, iPhone or iPod Touch) you use the iTunes U app
- With other mobile devices (Android, Windows etc), you will need to download files to a PC or Mac computer via iTunes Store and then upload to your phone/tablet in the appropriate format for that device.
Correct Referencing is vital to avoid academic penalties in your assignments. You should check the University’s referencing guides or ask your Information Librarian for guidance on the appropriate referencing style for your subject.
Academic and support staff: using iTunes U to support TEACHING
Adding iTunes U content to your Blackboard module
On your PC or Mac computer, download the item(s) you want to use within the iTunes application. Find the original file on your system and then upload into Blackboard as usual. TEACH has information on how to add files and how to embed audio and video for your Blackboard module. Alternatively, you could just add a link to the item for your students to access themselves (see below).
Playing audio/video content in a lecture/workshop
- Using the teaching room’s computer/projector system — in advance, check that iTunes is available on the computer you’ll be using. If it is not already installed, contact IT Customer Support and they will arrange this. Note: you may need to give them a couple of days’ notice, so it’s worth checking in good time before your lecture. With iTunes installed, you can either play the audio/video live or download to the local iTunes Library and play it from there.
- Using your own device (Windows/Mac laptop computer, iPad/iPhone/iPod Touch mobile devices) — you can either play the audio/video live using a wifi connection or download to your iTunes/iTunes U app and play the content offline. You may need a special connector to link to the projection system in the lecture room, so check in advance. If you need guidance, contact IT Customer Support.
Sharing links with your students
Sharing is easy!
From a PC/Mac computer or Windows/Mac laptop using the iTunes application:
- To share a Collection, right-click on the collection title and copy the link. What you’ve copied is simply a URL (web link) so you can then add this into your Blackboard/Moodle module, in the same way as any other web link. You could also email the link or add it to a blog, for example.
- To share an item from a collection, click the drop-down arrow alongside the 'Free’ button, and select from the options: share to Facebook, share to Twitter, or copy. If you use 'copy’ then you can add this to your module etc (as above).
From an Apple iPad/iPhone/iPod Touch using the iTunes U app:
- Select the item you want to share — this will open a pop-up panel. Select the upward arrow in the top right-hand corner, and you will be given the options for sharing: via Message, Mail, Twitter or Facebook, or you can select 'Copy Link’, which you can then paste anywhere (eg into Blackboard).
- Note: From the iTunes U app on mobile devices, you can only share a link to the collection, not to an individual item, so you may need to direct your students to the specific resource you want them to see.
Screenshot: iTunes U collection pop-up on an iPad
Screenshot: Sharing an iTunes U collection from an iPad