“Faculty have determined that students are more highly engaged,” he said. “The use of the iPad and applications we have implemented have resulted in more active participation and more meaningful discussion around issues. We have seen a significant increase in contact between faculty and students as a result of the new channels available for communication.”

An SHU survey conducted in early 2012 showed that six in 10 students used the iPad in their courses at least once a week, and half of student respondents said that tablet has had a positive effect on their college careers.

“We held a belief that mobile technology would become one of the most powerful tools of our time with which to teach and to learn, and as we took the giant step we were not at all certain how that leap would impact teaching and learning,” said SHU President JoAnne Boyle.

Not every college has an iPad success story to trumpet.

Virginia Commonwealth University’s Technology Services blog said that a fall 2011 survey showed that tablet ownership among the school’s students is “very weak.”

“Still, the trend for mobile is steadily moving up and we would probably see that reflected in tablet ownership if our survey was administered again this spring,” the blog said.

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