iPad review 5th to 9th March 2012

5/3/2012 – 9/3/2012

Note taking during seminars and lectures

Since trailing the iPad there are many different learning methods that I have used. The aim, to find a note taking method that is efficient and aids my learning, while allowing me to participate in discussions.

  • I first started by only using the iPad to facilitate learning. I annotated lecture slides on paper while using the Internet function on the iPad to research any examples for discussion in lectures and seminars. Initially this worked well as I found it difficult to type on the iPad. However I found myself using apps that we’re not educational in content. Angry birds was something that occupied my time when I was bored, or didn’t understand the lecturer.


  • As my ability to type on the iPad improved I downloaded One Note. Although I thought this would improve the simplicity of typing it actually complicated things. I have come to the conclusion that the built-in Notes app is the best app for taking notes during class. With is method, I didn’t use the handouts, all I did was try and type everything that the lecturer said as quick as I could. I eventually realised I was not a fan of this technique. I felt like firstly I wasn’t participating much in the class discussions, and secondly I was missing a lot of information as I just couldn’t type fast enough.


  • After downloading Quick Office Pro HD, I decided to try annotate lecture slides direct from the iPad. I downloaded GoodReader and together using both apps, I was able to edit lecture slides, and annotate them with notes I took during class.

For one of my seminars I created a PowerPoint presentation on quick office. For some reason unknown to me, I couldn’t send it to myself as an error message was displayed. I tried doing what the error message said but it was still there, and would not let me send the presentation to myself. The error said there was missing fields when sending an email, however this was not the case. I have attached a screen shot.

Doing this however is not the quickest thing to do while trying to listen to the lecture and participate in discussions. Therefore I downloaded Draw Pad. This app allows me to hand write key points that I pick up from lecture.  Again, most people may find this learning style strange, but with the ease of transferring from one app to another, I found that draw pad kept me engaged with the lectures.

Overall I believe that the best learning experience arises from a combination of method one and three. Annotating lecture slides in not as easy as I first thought, plus with annotating everything has to be written in straight lines. Therefore things such as coloured arrows can’t be used or pictures, that sometimes help explain principles. I find that hand writing in lectures is better than using the iPad, however in seminars I prefer to use the lecture notes to understand the core principles of the seminar.

I have stopped using paper handouts, however I still collect them for revision purposes.


Has the iPad helped when writing assignments?

The good thing about the iPad is that I can quickly and efficiently lookup information. Due to this, it has speeded up the time taken to research facts. For example, euro monitor and world bank have allowed me to quickly look up information that contributed to the country screening process in fmes.

Although for actually typing I still used my laptop, the multitasking element that I was allowed to do because of two devices (iPad and laptop) made my assignment flow better, and also allowed me to find a greater number of references.


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Random France trip

iPad in France

As it was my birthday, I was In France for the weekend. I decided to take the iPad with me to see if it was useful when abroad.

Firstly li found that at the airport it was a great way to kill time. As my flight was delayed I was in the airport for around 3 hours. The iPad battery is great, so I spent most of my time playing games etc. as e wifi cost money I could only use it free for thirty minutes, nevertheless there were many things I could do on the iPad.

I found myself revising, using notes that I had made, and pictures that I had taken. The snapshot tool is great. I went on the persons e text and while reading chapters took snapshots of then. Tis allowed me to access the book when offline.

During the day I didn’t use the iPad much, but it helped plan routes around France. While visiting the tourist destinations I found myself keeping the iPad close as I didn’t feel it was safe in the hotel (my hotel was pretty bad)

Carrying it around wasn’t a problem, and I even used it to take a few pictures on the Eiffel tower.

The downside of the iPad however is that in France it s very difficult to watch movies online. I normally stream them through Citrix receiver, but it wasn’t working. I tried watching bbc i player, and it doesn’t work in France. Finally I tried downloading a movie from iTunes, this also didn’t work, as it took all nit to download.

Now, at the end of the trip I am sat in the airport writing this. France is an amazing place to visit, most of you have probably been there, but I now understand why it’s the largest tourist destination in the world. Pretty cool!


iPad week two Day 1- after watching stefano typing up lectures like a madman, I decided to try it for myself.  The more you use the keyboard the easier it gets. Again, I would love the iPad to have a specialised pen with it, as I am missing a lot of vital information. I am still annotating lecture slides, and I find that I seem to pick up the information I type must faster. This is probability because it takes me longer to write it, plus spelling mistakes means I have to retread it to edit it. In terms of games, I am not playing them as much now. Angry birds seems to be a favourite, but apart from that my most used app in Facebook.  I use the notes app a lot also, and thanks to Denis have recently discovered that the keypad splits,

Day 2- I feel I am becoming less vocal in lectures as my head it glued to the iPad. I don’t seem to answer as many questions and I need to make a conscious effort to therefore contribute more in class.

Day 3- found a fault with e iPad this morning. I took it off chard and the screen decided to lock positions. Hereford I could not turn it. I checked the settings and this indicated that my screen should not be locking. When I went to uni I showed stefano what happened to my iPad, and we decided to test if the same would happen to his. After hanging the settings to lock, and then back to unlock, the iPad was still locked. Even after turning it on and off, it still didn’t work. To combat this problem the setting had to be reset. Later when I was talking to tony, he also told me that his iPad was having similar. Problems, however he couldn’t press a button.

Day 4- forgot the iPad at home, had to be old school and write with a pen.

Day 5- downloaded some cool apps today, realised that there is an app for everything and anything. There’s a cool video editing tool that allows you to slow movies down. This is perfect for training, and I can record my technique, and then break it down to see exactly what I am doing wrong. Overall this week it has to be said that the iPad although not a necessity, it a gadget that makes research easier.


Day 1,2 and the week’s highlights on the iPad2

The first day highlighted some major issues with the iPad. Although this technology looks and performs beautifully, is it practical when trying to concentrate on already difficult lectures? My thoughts so far suggest that it has done nothing but distract me. But then again, I am usually the same with all new technology. Maybe once the excitement dies down I will use it for more than games and music.

It might just be me, but I would love there to be a pen with the iPad. I downloaded an app that allows me to make notes, but it is difficult to use with my finger. If I could annotate lecture notes from the vle this would work.

The iPad has helped me with understanding certain topics. I was in a seminar on Tuesday, and I was searching the Internet for answers while joining in with group discussions. The speed at which I can locate information gave me an advantage when trying to understand the topic.

The second day with the iPad was much better. I have synced it with my iTunes, and have had time to get over its ‘shiny new exterior’. Today I have actually used it for practical reasons. It has been in my bag all day, and has only left when I need to for research, to lookup timetables or have a cheeky stalk on Facebook.

Practically it helps. It doesn’t seem like a necessity, rather an educational luxury that aids learning. Once you grasp the technology it makes life easier, however it’s difficult to pick up all the little tricks as there are soo many. Maybe by next week I will be a pro.

My only concern is that the iPad seems delicate. When it’s in my bag I am scared to knock it or even scratch it. I am contemplating getting a more protective cover.

Week 1- at the end of this week my opinion has changed greatly. Firstly I have bought a sock for the iPad, and this looks cool and protects it. Secondly I am becoming better at using the iPad, and therefore it has become more practical.

In uni I am using it to take notes, and at training I am using it to record videos for analysis. The iPad has a great video editing tool, which allows you to cut videos down to size very quickly. I haven’t yet used the iPad for music, but bbc I player is a regular app that I use.

Week one summary would therefore be – iPad so far so good!

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