BOCA RATON, Fla. – Freshmen at Lynn University started both a new year and new hi-tech era at the school last month. They ditched their textbooks and switched to iPads, a direct result of last year's presidential race.
"We joined the iPad mini revolution, [which] is what we call it," said student Michael Van Casteren.
All 600 freshmen students will be doing their course work using material that can now be found on their tablets.
"Everyone is so well versed in technology now a days, it's kind of, you know, why not do it, why not make the transition," said student Ciera Delice.
The transition was made easier due to last year's presidential debate that was held at the university.
The school spent $2 million on IT networking equipment needed to bring the event to the world. Now, all the tech improvements are powering student iPads.
"It kind of gave us that ability to leapfrog a couple of years and launch this a lot quicker than what we originally thought we'd be able to do," said Chief Information Officer Chris Boniforti.
The iPads offer instant results on classroom exercises, and teachers say the minis keeps students engaged.
"It's really interactive and fun to be involved in school for once. It gets you excited to actually learn something," said Casteren.
"We embed videos. We embed opportunities for them to check their learning throughout, sort of built in quizzes and it monitors whether or not they're correct," said Lynn University's Gregg Cox.
Students are sold on saving money and their muscles; $800 textbook bills are now cut at least in half, and so is the weight of their schoolbags.
"Oh my gosh, probably 12 to 15 pounds in like heavy textbooks, and now I just carry around this (her iPad)," said Delice.
The school's technology fee funds all the school's technology, including the iPads. The fee is $200 a semester per student.