Together with HPI, three other German top universities are also going live with their courses on iTunesU today: RWTH Aachen, Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg, and Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich. These are the first four German participants on iTunesU.
Until today iTunes U hosted only lectures and other content from about 200 North American and UK institutions of higher education. Among them are US institutions like Stanford and the MIT, but also the British top universities Oxford and Cambridge. In order to download the content and documentation which are provided in German or English users do not need to be students: anybody around the world can download free of charge.
"Especially in the fast moving high tech industry continuing education is becoming ever more important. The growing demand for professional, industry-specific knowledge transfer can be met by such innovative platforms as iTunes U," HPI director Professor Christoph Meinel explained his institute's participation. As the chair for Internet Technologies and Systems the 54-year-old scientist is one of the most experienced German e-learning and tele-teaching experts.
"Because there is no way around lifelong learning, we have been providing interested parties with the opportunity to bring their IT knowledge up to date for many years, using our own platform www.tele-task.de which people can access anytime and anywhere free of charge," Meinel emphasized. iTunes U would now provide an additional opportunity to select course content according to individual interests and requirements, to download them to the computer, and to display them on mobile devices. HPI, which has been awarded the title "distinguished place" for innovation three times by the initiative "Germany - Land of Ideas", has branded its iTunes U appearance with the slogan "Move IT".HPI Podcasts show lecturers with their desktop presentation
Another project of the future at Hasso Plattner Institute is "tele-TASK TV." It aims to appeal to a larger group of people than just those who only want to view content on the computer or on mobile video players (so-called "lean- forward users"). "In the future, computer science contents will be edited for the large TV screen in the living room and broadcasted via IP-TV. With this educational TV on the internet we can also reach the 'lean-back user', that is people who want to relax on their couch, yet still do something for their professional training. This way classical entertainment like watching TV becomes edutainment", Meinel predicts.
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