Four millionth down load as Australia’s first science collection is released on the global online channel
La Trobe University’s ground-breaking free non-award courses on Apple ‘iTunes U’ have made a tremendous impact globally.
Two have been promoted in as many weeks as the lead item on the iTunes U home page.
The first was ‘Principles of Physics‘, one of six new La Trobe subjects launched on iTunes U this semester.
The second was the ‘History of Children’s Literature’, one of three courses by lecturer in Literacy Education, David Beagley, released late last year.
The new physics course – the first science collection launchedby an Australian university on iTunes U courses – is taught by Head of Physics, Professor Paul Pigram, and first-year Physics Co-ordinator, Dr David Hoxley.
Science ‘comes alive’ for online audience
Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor John Rosenberg says: ‘As a leading university for the teaching of science it is important we engage with students and the community in new and innovative ways, and iTunesU gives us access to millions of interested people all over the world.’
The new on-line physics course coincides with a recently released report commissioned by Australia’s Chief Scientist which shows university science enrolments between 2002 and 2010 have flat-lined.
Professor Rosenberg says La Trobe is committed to teaching physics, chemistry and mathematics, the ‘enabling sciences’, not only by traditional methods, but also using new technology.
‘Through iTunes U we can take physics and other courses to an international market, sharing our academic expertise and making science come alive to an online audience.’
Australian ‘first’ for course content
Head of Media and Communications, Mark Pearce, whose area co-ordinates La Trobe on iTunes U, says the University is the ‘first and only Australian university so far to provide course content on iTunes U, joining universities such as Stanford, Oxford and Yale on the Apple platform’.
The ‘Principles of Physics’ course offers three lectures every week. It instructs in solving problems of classical physics, such as mechanics, thermodynamics, waves and optics, providing the basis for further study in physics, engineering or other sciences offered at La Trobe.
Students also learn about linear and rotational kinematics and dynamics, geometric optics, thermodynamics, and simple harmonic motion.
Since its launch in October 2009, La Trobe on iTunes U has established itself as an important member of the iTunes U community.
Apart from its current total of nine courses, La Trobe on iTunes U offers almost 900 podcasts and videos covering the spread of the University’s wealth of knowledge and expertise.