The use of technological tools in education has been on a steady rise for years. Students have incorporated electronic resources, laptops, and digital media into their learning. Now, the trend is toward tablets, and medical schools are starting to provide them directly to their students. A recent article by the Daily Pennsylvanian talks about how iPad 3s are being provided to medical students at Penn.
The push to go electronic is good for both the student and the environment. In a field that could accumulate millions of pages of notes and readings every year, the iPad allows students to do away with that waste and carry all their materials with them in one slim package. Added to this, the move to digital lets educators expand their teaching techniques through the use of interactive materials and integration of changing information.
“We discovered that we could tailor material to our own courses. And the other nice thing is if we want to change
anything in the slides last minute — which we all do — we can...Faculty are finding this a pleasure to use, and it’s going to free our time to produce new materials.” ~ Neal Rubinstein, Associate Professor of Cell and Developmental Biology (Perelman School of Medicine)
The use of iPad technology isn't confined to the classroom either. Students working in hospital environments can access patient data, even sharing it while in the room with them. This accessibility will serve them well as they embark on their own careers and the early use of such technology will ensure a higher comfort level for future medical professionals. Mobile technology will become commonplace and information will be more widely available on the go.