It might have been easier to pinpoint mobile-friendly colleges in the mid-2000s, before schools of every size invested in support for web-connected mobile devices of every kind pouring onto campus.

mobileSpotting colleges and universities with the best mobile device policies is increasingly difficult, as higher education — driven in part by K-12’s mobile adoption — is investing time and money into creating the most friendly mobile atmosphere possible.

It makes sense, as college students have turned to smartphones as their primary study tool, beating out computers and tablets in 2013. Students are even asking for more homework assignments to be mobile device friendly.

College technology officials, in other words, are highly invested in mobile technology not so students can stream movies in their dorm rooms, but because they are increasingly relying on tablets and smartphones as essential educational tools.

In the midst of higher education’s headfirst dive into mobile technology, it’s good to know which schools are rising above the rest in their commitment to excellent mobile programs for students and faculty. has ranked the nation’s top-5 mobile tech-savvy campuses.

5. University of Missouri Columbia: The university is pushing for development in both Apple and Windows devices. Students in the School of Journalism are required to purchase an iPhone to review course materials. Lectures are available in audio form for students to review after the class. The Reynolds Journalism Institute opened a Microsoft App Development Lab that creates apps for the Windows 8 operating system. The lab is open after hours for students who want to create and test new applications with supervision from faculty and staff.

4. University of Maryland College Park: The Computer Science program includes a course called “Programming the iPhone.” Upper-level students learn to develop programming software for the iPhone. Part of the university’s Mobility Initiative, the course encourage students to develop apps that can be used throughout the university. Students are given MacBooks during class time, and students who complete this course gain experience that employers are interested in utilizing when they graduate.

See page 2 for the top-3 mobile tech-savvy campuses…