California State University Offering iPad Air, Apple Pencil, and Keyboard to 35,000 Incoming Students

California State University today announced the launch of a new CSUCCESS program that is designed to provide equitable opportunities to students through the use of technology.

csu ipad program
The first phase of the initiative will see CSU providing a 64GB iPad Air, Apple Pencil, and Apple Smart Keyboard Folio to all incoming first year and transfer students at eight participating campuses in Fall 2021. Students will need to register to participate, and the CSUCCESS website says that with a keyboard attachment and pencil, the ‌iPad Air‌ is "comparable to a laptop."

CSU Chancellor Joseph I. Castro said that the initiative will "assure that students have immediate access to innovative, new mobile tools they need to support their learning," with the ‌iPad Air‌ serving as a "powerful tool" that will prepare students for their future careers.

Susan Prescott, Apple's Vice President of Education and Enterprise Marketing, said that Apple is "thrilled" about the ‌iPad Air‌ rollout at CSU campuses.

"At Apple, we believe that education is a powerful force for equity and opportunity, and that technology can empower all students to achieve their goals," said Susan Prescott, Apple's Vice President of Education and Enterprise Marketing. "We're thrilled that iPad Air and the incredible education apps in the App Store will be central to the experience at CSU campuses across California, and will play a part in the learning and career development of students from Humboldt to San Marcos."

Students at the CSU campuses located in Bakersfield, Channel Islands, Fresno, Humboldt, Los Angeles, Maritime Academy, Northridge and San Marcos will be participating in the first phase of the program.

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Top Rated Comments

darcyf Avatar
39 months ago
iPads are fine machines but they’re not laptops. You can get stuff done with them, but if you need to consistently get real work done you are limiting yourself if you go with an iPad over a MacBook.
Score: 26 Votes (Like | Disagree)
GuruZac Avatar
39 months ago
Now the students know why their tuition went up $600 ?
Score: 21 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Cosmosent Avatar
39 months ago
Dumb move !

Giving them ALL an M1 MacBook Air would have been a much, much smarter decision !
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Pakaku Avatar
39 months ago

the CSUCCESS website says that with a keyboard attachment and pencil, the iPad Air is "comparable to a laptop.
Speaking as a recent graduate, I definitely wouldn't have been as productive as I would have with an actual laptop.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
nutmac Avatar
39 months ago

iPads are fine machines but they’re not laptops. You can get stuff done with them, but if you need to consistently get real work done you are limiting yourself if you go with an iPad over a MacBook.
I almost always prefer MacBook for productivity needs.

But in a class room setting, iPad Air + Pencil 2 + Magic Keyboard combo can be superior for taking notes. Rear camera for quickly taking pictures and Pencil for drawing diagrams and writing equations.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
jlc1978 Avatar
39 months ago

Speaking as a recent graduate, I definitely wouldn't have been as productive as with an actual laptop.
Out of curiosity, what was your major? I know several business majors and the most they needed was an office suite that was MS Office compatible on their MacBook. They never did any serious computation, and if needed there was a computer lab they could use.

Now, for some majors, a laptop is a must if you are doing regression analysis, (partial) differential equations, serious financial analysis, etc.

I'm not sure why people think that an iPad works as a laptop. I mean, sure, you can use limited apps on it, but for whatever reason, the iPad OS is not made for advanced uses. That's not exactly how you prepare students for the future, unless you envision a future of professionals without advanced technical skills.
I would say as long as most can navigate through an office suite they have the computational skills they need.


When you say AppleWorks, do you mean iWork (Pages, Numbers, Keynote)?
Yes. I never liked the iWorks moniker, since my first WP was AppleWorks on a ][+. AppleWorks, IMHO, has a nicer ring to it. Just me being cantankerous.

Now, get off my lawn...
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)