As the Class of 2016 begins their Pirate Adventure and Freshman Experience this week, they will pilot the next phase of the University's Mobile Computing Initiative with a premier Nokia, Microsoft and AT&T integrated experience through the Nokia Lumia 900 smartphones.
"By providing Nokia Lumia 900s to our incoming freshman, the University is able to ensure that we offer equal opportunity for all of our students to access relevant and timely information about the University, while establishing new and innovative channels for their engagement with each other and with critical support and contacts on campus. We anticipate that our freshman will benefit from utilizing these channels to help with their transition to collegiate life while building lifelong friendships and a lifelong connection to Seton Hall University," says David Middleton, Assistant Vice President for Administration and Executive Director of the University's Center for Mobile Research and Innovation.
"We are pleased to support Seton Hall University's exploration in mobile. The easy integration of the Lumia 900 into the University's existing infrastructure made the collaboration between Nokia and Seton Hall University a natural evolution of our long standing relationship," says Purnima Kochikar, Vice President, Business, at Nokia.
The Nokia Lumia 900 offers Seton Hall unique teaching, learning, and research opportunities for faculty and students.
"Having used smartphones as a teaching and learning tool since 2008, it has become clear that the conventional wisdom of incoming students as expert or proficient users of mobile technology is not always correct. While students tend to be dynamic consumers of internet content and social media, these skills do not automatically translate into academic and professional use," says Michael Taylor, Associate Professor, Political Science & Public Administration, and Academic Director of the Center for Mobile Research and Innovation.
David Middleton adds, "Led by Seton Hall's Teaching, Learning and Technology Center, academic pilots using Nokia phones were conducted in 2008 and 2009, in which the devices were integrated into course work in Environmental Studies, Business Leadership, Fine Arts and Freshman Studies among other departments. Using mobiles enabled our students to create content in the form of digital stories and electronic portfolios, collaborate with their classmates by sharing resources, and communicate with their peers and faculty through instant messaging and video chats."
Dr. Taylor explains that including the Nokia Lumia 900 in the technology portfolio of the freshman class is an acknowledgement that the next wave of technological expansion is the deeper integration of the smartphone into our existing communication, information, entertainment, and learning ecosystems. It is not a direct replacement of the traditional computing technology, but rather a compliment that both extends our existing learning opportunities and creates new ones.
"Freshman orientation seeks to have undergraduate students become familiar with their classmates and the University as a whole. It is the moment when a student becomes a member of the campus community. One drawback to traditional orientation is that the event takes place months before the first day of classes, and much of the effort to create a sense of community is lost during this period." says Dr. Taylor.
Community is a critical component of the Seton Hall University experience. The University mission identifies Seton Hall's dedication to preparing students as leaders in their "professional and community lives." The SHUmobile app is an extension of this commitment, and provides valuable content as well as academic and administrative information to students. The personalized Freshman Experience feature of the app, exclusive to the Lumia 900, provides a new opportunity for incoming students to establish a connection with the University community, even before they are on campus as full time students.
In addition to the SHUmobile Freshman Experience app, student engagement with the Lumia 900 will be reinforced through the use of Nokia Data Gathering. Nokia Data Gathering will be available for use by students, faculty, and staff at Seton Hall University to support student and faculty research and as a classroom teaching and learning tool. Nokia Data Gathering will be used to send questionnaires to students during the summer, allowing the University to stay in touch with incoming students and provide feedback to their needs and concerns prior to arrival in the fall, as well as insights into how they are using mobile technology.
"As the use of mobile devices has grown, we have continued to identify opportunities for exploring and assessing their impact on life and learning on campus. Adding smartphones to Mobile Computing was the natural evolution of the relationships that exist among Seton Hall University, Microsoft, Nokia and AT&T." explains David Middleton. "By providing our incoming students with the Nokia Lumia 900, Seton Hall can expand the University's community, services and infrastructure into the pockets of the students."
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