With the start of a new school year just around the corner it’s a great time to look at why Apple’s new iPad is such an indispensible tool for students. From containing multiple textbooks in one slender tablet to multi-tasking as an organizer, the new iPad makes students' lives easier.
The new iPad can serve as a document carrier and study aid, while also providing easy access to e-mail and the Internet. And when school work is done, the new iPad makes a great platform for playing games or watching videos. In a nutshell, the new iPad takes what used to be mountains of burdensome materials and condenses them into one transportable, biomechanically-friendly device you’ll never know how you lived without. You might even be able to get rid of that backpack!
Digital Textbooks on the new iPad
Let’s get started with a look at digital textbooks for the new iPad. It wasn’t long ago when your only option for textbooks was… well, textbooks. Those backbreaking behemoths have filled up backpacks everywhere for ages, to only later sit on bookshelves long after all those Chemistry and English lit classes have ended, never to be looked at again, relegated to an existence as dust collectors. That is unless you return them to the bookstore for a fraction of the money you paid originally.
Digital textbooks have a number of advantages for students. For one, they take up no space and they weigh nothing. All you have to carry around is the weight of your slender new iPad in whatever bag you use—because as we know, you no longer need that bulky backpack. As if it’s not obvious enough, the weight of the new iPad—a mere 1.44 pounds—will seem like nothing compared to the slew of books you used to carry around. Your chiropractor will miss you.
Apple’s new iPad has revolutionized the world of textbooks with iBooks 2. Apple’s Multi-Touch textbooks for iPad make it quite possible that you could carry every book for every class everywhere you go. The Textbook section of the iBookstore has texts available from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, McGraw Hill Education, and Pearson, for K-12, higher education, and professionals. Using the iBooks 2 app, both students and school administrators alike can purchase affordable textbooks from the iBookstore, with most being priced at just $14.99 or less.
Multi-touch textbooks aren’t just two-dimensional fact-containing bibles one must memorize into order to pass; they’re interactive learning tools with videos, photos, and the ability to rotate a 3D object. They even feature highlighting and note taking capabilities, among other options. Multi-Touch textbooks are engaging, making learning more enticing, especially for today’s young students, those who were born and raised with computers and everything digital.
Aside from Multi-Touch textbooks, digital textbooks for the new iPad can be purchased from iTunes, and directly from publishers, Amazon, and various online aggregators. You can even borrow books to use on your new iPad from numerous public libraries. E-Textbooks can also be rented for the term through many publishers, among other sources. While not all your textbooks may be available digitally yet, the movement is growing and it’s expected very soon that they will be.
Study and Organizational Apps
The new iPad is also an awesome tool for brushing up on your schoolwork with apps that quiz, refresh, and help you find and remember all that data you need to be the best student you can be. Apps such as MathBoard and Dictionary.com give you an edge over other students, because you’ll have these indispensible resources on you at all times.
Apps like Evernote are a godsend. Evernote makes it a breeze to take notes no matter what class you’re in. The app also syncs your notes to your other Apple devices, allowing you to read and review them whenever you need to, or to share them with classmates. It can even record your professor as he or she lectures, ensuring that you won’t miss any important facts. Another great app for the iPad is Penultimate, a note-taking app that lets you use a stylus to take notes or draw. With this app you hypothetically will never need another paper notebook.
iTunes U is an extremely beneficial enhancement for anyone’s learning style. A free app from iTunes, iTunes U provides access to courses from universities like Yale, Oxford, MIT, and more. This app can be used with your iPhone or iPod touch (with iOS 5 or later) as well. It’s an excellent way for young and adult learners alike to grow their knowledge in almost any subject, whether it’s to supplement their coursework or simply for the joy of learning.
There are multitudes of apps, and the list for students goes on and on, from flash card apps, like Flashcards Deluxe, to apps that quiz you, like Anatomy Quiz Pro, to word games such as Words with Friends, to apps that lead you to online resources, like the New York Public library (as well as many other public libraries). A few additional study apps to consider for the new iPad include the Visual Thesaurus, the Oxford American Dictionary, and National Geographic Kids.
Since you’ll always have your new iPad on you, you can study anytime anywhere, without having to dig for your flash cards that accidently got left at home, or on the bus. Since consistent studying is what adds up to being a successful student, the new iPad begins to look like the one study aid you can’t live without.
The new iPad can help you to stay organized, informed, and on time too. Inherent in the new iPad itself is the aforementioned iBooks 2 app, Maps, Newsstand, the Calendar, Reminders, Contacts, Notes, and more, all which help students stay on top of what’s important. In addition, you can also pick up great student-geared planner and organizer apps at the App store, like iStudiez Pro.
Face Time and iSight Cameras Enhance Learning
Other not so traditional ways the new iPad can help you study include using the built-in FaceTime and iSight cameras. With the FaceTime camera you can do more than take photos. You can chat with classmates or teachers with the help of the Face Time app or Skype. That means if leaving the house to study with friends isn’t really in the cards for whatever reason, you could always meet up with your study-buddy, each from the comfort of your own homes. You can also show the project you’re working on and ask questions, or take photos of your artwork to send to teachers for advice. The 5Mp iSight camera on the new iPad comes in handy for taking higher resolution photos and recording 1080p high-def video.
iCloud Integrates All Your Data
Another extremely beneficial aspect of the new iPad is that it integrates data seamlessly with your iPhone, iPod touch, and Mac computer. Thanks to the wonders of iCloud all the content on all your Apple devices can be easily shared and stored. If you edit your student planner on your iPhone, you’ll see all the changes on your iPad. If you purchase a new app on your iPad, it’ll show up on your iPhone (assuming it’s compatible).
The iCloud backs up your iPad daily over Wi-Fi, when it’s connected to a power source. Apps, music, documents, and more all get saved in the iCloud. What’s more, iCloud gives you device-finding capabilities. Should you lose or have your new iPad stolen, Find My iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac shows you where it is, on one of your other Apple devices. iCloud can do all this and so much more.
When it’s Time for a Study Break
Eventually, even the most hard-core student needs a break. Whether it’s a few minutes of Angry Birds or watching your favorite TV show the new iPad is an entertainment hub. The convenient YouTube app that comes on the new iPad gives you easy-access to the Internet’s most-popular video sharing and viewing site. While the Game Center app lets you not only play your favorite games purchased from the App Store, but it also lets you play with and against other friends and users via the Internet. You can also purchase and download books, videos, music, pod casts, and more to enjoy on your new iPad via iTunes, the App Store, and the iBookstore.
If all else fails to intrigue you during your break-time there’s always the Internet via the Safari browser. You can also check your email using the convenient Mail app on the new iPad. With direct access to the Internet over Wi-Fi or 4G LTE you can catch up on news, shop, read about your favorite celebs, or simply surf. Of course, you could always go back to studying and do some homework-related research online, instead.
Hours of Uninterrupted Learning
The new iPad has a battery life of up to 10 hours when surfing the web on Wi-Fi, watching videos, or listening to music. It can be charged using the included power adapter, or USB cable when connected to your Mac or PC. That means you can study uninterrupted for hours. When the battery power does eventually start to wane, just plug into the nearest computer or wall outlet for continued use.
Outfitting the new iPad
If you’re going to be carrying your new iPad around everywhere you go, you’re going to want to make sure it’s protected. Even the most conscientious student is going to scuff, scratch, or just put plain wear and tear on the new iPad if it’s not properly covered.
You can store your iPad in a sleeve or case and then carry it with you in an existing bag, or by itself. Sleeves ranging from the fun iLuv sleeves to the hardy Porta Brace sleeves ensure your iPad will stay looking as good as new even at the end of the semester, while not adding a lot of bulk. Of course, a screen protector and a shell or a more heavy-duty case, like the Otter Box Defender Series Case, are also practical investments.
The Apple Smart cover is another wise option. Its multiple benefits include automatic on/off capabilities for your iPad when you open or close the cover, the ability to use the cover as a stand to elevate and angle the iPad for easier typing, and plain and simple protection from scrapes and scuffs.
Other accessories that enhance the new iPad’s usefulness in a student’s life include wireless keyboards like the Apple Wireless Keyboard and stands. When you’re home, or studying at the library, you can turn the new iPad into a laptop of sorts with a few simple, lightweight add-ons. Put the new iPad in a portable stand, sync the wireless keyboard with your new iPad and you’ll be typing emails, writing papers using Pages, and chatting with classmates or teachers with ease! Of course, you could always go with a keyboard and case combo that offers laptop-esque performance and protection all in one. Throw in a stylus and you’ll be well equipped for anything and everything you can do with the new iPad.
A stand is also a great way to easily take in the view of the beautiful 9.7” Retina display of the new iPad for hours of use, whether you’re reading a textbook or watching Microbe World with your earphones in. Give your wrists a rest and read, view, watch, and listen for hours of intense study.
Because it’s so slim, the new iPad fits into a thin compartment in almost any bag, leaving you room for those other tools you may still occasionally need as a student. Of course, if you choose to carry accessories for the new iPad with you, the larger compartment of whatever bag you’re using can be used to hold those items as well.
And should you choose to continue to use a backpack for school, Pelican makes a line of extremely durable and functional backpacks especially for the new iPad that will last the school year, and well beyond.
Leave Us a Comment
Leave us a comment below and let us know what ways you use, or plan to use, the new iPad in your studies. This article is part of an on-going InDepth series on the new iPad. Please check out the previous articles and look for future articles on a variety of user + iPad centric topics. From cooking with the iPad to utilizing the iCloud to making the iPad a business tool you can’t live without, this series shows you numerous ways the new iPad can improve and change your life. Feel free to leave comments for future articles you’d like to see about the new iPad as well. Thanks for reading, and best wishes on a successful school year ahead.