Apple and Stanford University have teamed up to create Stanford on iTunes. The service provides faculty lectures, interviews, music, book readings, and more through the iTunes Music Store (iTMS). Most content is available to the public, although course-based materials are limited to current students.
Searching the iTMS for Stanfordis lectures and other content wonit turn up much. Instead, a special link from the Stanford web site opens iTunes and takes you to the content. Currently, there are over 300 pubic downloads and about 100 reserved for faculty and students.
Stanford on iTunes
The diversity in the programming Stanford offers will entice iTunes users from around the world, increasing awareness and interest in the Universityis projects. Alumni now have a more dynamic way to stay up to date on Campus happenings, and students no longer have to record lectures themselves. Instead, they can wait until later in the day and download recordings of their classes.
Howard Wolf, vice president for alumni affairs and president of the Stanford Alumni Association, commented in the Stanford Report, "Stanford has been fortunate to partner with Apple in a project that allows us to share the intellectual and cultural life of the university with our alumni. We are especially pleased that the projectis focus is to deliver substantive content that so clearly supports the universityis mission of teaching, learning and research both in the classroom and to our thousands of alumni around the world."
Statistics on the number of users arenit available, but Stanford is pleased with the response so far. If the program proves successful, itis likely that other schools will attempt similar programs. The Stanford on iTunes model would work well for other Universities, distance learning programs, collaborative K-12 programs, and home schooling.
Stanford isnit the first University to offer recordings of lectures to students through Apple technologies. Duke and Brown Universities both instituted programs where they provided iPods to students as study aids. Stanford, however, is the first to offer an iTunes based system that lets users easily download programming.
As the Stanford on iTunes program grows, watch for other schools to jump on board and follow in Stanfordis footsteps: Drawing communities together through the free exchange of knowledge.