Stanford and Piazza Add Peer Collaboration to iTunes U 'iPad and iPhone App Development' Course
Earlier this year, Apple completely revamped iTunes U with new iPad and iPhone apps as well as new tools that allow teachers to include assignments, books, quizzes and syllabuses with their iTunes U courses.
Now, Stanford is taking that a step further by linking the Piazza social learning platform with one of the most popular iTunes U courses -- Professor Paul Hegarty's iPad and iPhone App Development [iTunes Link].
The new social media aspect of the course builds on a technology many students already use: Piazza, a social learning platform. Stanford students taking the classroom version of Paul Hegarty's programming course, on which the online course is based, have used Piazza.
Earlier versions of the 10-week apps course have proved enormously popular, with individual lecture videos downloaded more than 10 million times.
The inclusion of Piazza will enhance the learning experience, said Brent Izutsu, Stanford's program manager for iTunes U. "There is an enormous potential for collaboration and community-building though Q&A and problem-solving with friends from across the globe," he said.
Those enrolled in the iTunes U class are expected to answer questions as well as ask them, while the course captains facilitate discussions and drive students toward correct answers.
The course follows the iOS 5 course from the Fall 2011 semester that's currently on iTunes U -- Stanford is taking those lectures and using Piazza to improve the experience for users taking the class across the same 10 week period.
We hope that the ability to ask and answer questions online will help even more people learn - increasing the value of the materials Stanford has already made available. We also think having peers will make it more fun, and will make you more likely to keep going when the going gets tough.
The course will run June 25 to August 16. Registration is free and closes July 6.