The Student Government Association is helping students study, starting with lending out iPads for free. SGA President Billy Stephens said SGA is working with the Educational Resource Center in Gary Ransdell Hall to make this happen.
SGA is planning to provide two first-generation iPads for ERC to load books onto and lend out to students. They are using this as a preliminary trial and hope to expand later on.
“If all goes according to plan, which we think it will, we’re going to work on getting it up to the main library,” Stephens said.
Stephens also said that SGA will mostly focus on putting test prep books and materials on the iPads.
However, Stephens said that if there are popular books that are checked out often, they might load those books on so there is an extra copy on hand.
“That way the library has not only a hard copy, but a digital copy as well,” he said.
One important aspect that SGA is working on with ERC is security. The iPads need to have security software installed for them to be lent out.
Funding for the iPads will be provided by SGA. The organization has set money aside for this purpose.
Stephens said the iPads should be available before finals this semester.
The iPad idea was originally thought of by Stephens and SGA Executive Vice President Kendrick Bryan.
Devon Hilderbrandt, SGA Administrative Vice President, said SGA is still finalizing prices. He said the expected price of a first generation iPad is around $400.
Hilderbrandt said it was worth spending more money on the iPad because students should get more out of them.
Associate professor Roxanne Spencer is SGA’s main contact at ERC and said that the iPads will be lent free of charge, but they have no established policies regarding their use. They are still in the discussion stage.
Spencer said that initially, the iPads will be lent out only for short periods of time. They will probably start with in house or overnight use.
Spencer also said that the iPads will not be used primarily for reading novels. She said, as Stephens did, that they will mainly be used for test prep and study guides, for tests such as the PRAXIS exam.
“We’re still trying to identify what would be of most academic use,” Spencer said.