CMST 266-357 Communication Studies - Xu

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About This Article

This article describes how mobile computing, specifically tablets, was piloted in Professor Jin Xu's CMST 266 Professional Communications Skills and CMST 357 Communications in Social Media to transform teaching and learning.

Intended Audience

WSU instructors interested in past faculty experience with tablet devices in the classroom.

Fall 2013 and Spring 2014 iPad Pilot

Students in these courses had access to an iPad tablet to use throughout the semester along with several apps selected by Professor Xu for use in class.

How the iPads are Used in CMST 266/357

Both CMST 266 and CMST 357 used the iPads regularly. In CMST 357 Communication in Social Media, the students used the iPads as carry-around communication devices. Students used Twitter to share resources and information and maintained regular contact with each other. They also used them to read, take notes, and post to the blog. In CMST 266 Professional Communication, students used the iPads to do their their presentations and conduct group discussion.

Professor Xu expected the following outcomes from this pilot:

  • Increase student interaction and collaboration in and out of the classroom. Leveraging the iPad's mobility and application set, Professor Xu hoped to see an increase in the communication between students in the classroom and substantial growth in collaboration outside of the class meetings.


Changes in the classroom

  • Increased communication between students. Because of the mobile nature of the device and the supporting applications, using the iPad to communicate with fellow students was easy and natural.
  • Required readings done on the iPad. Students tended to download required readings from D2L onto the iPad and take the readings with them. Again, the mobile nature of the device expanded how and where students could work.
  • Use of iPad as second monitor. Using the iPad as a secondary screen gave the students more real estate when they did their class work.


  • Increase training for the instructor. While there are many sources for training on the Internet, it would be helpful to have more in-house training for the instructors. The hands-on nature and collaboration in in-house training saves time, builds cohorts, and generates synergistic ideas.

iPad Applications Employed in CMST 266/357

Professor Xu used the following applications in his iPad pilot:

  • Doceri
  • Nearpod
  • Notability
  • Twitter
  • WordPress

Descriptions, pricing, and links to iTunes for each of these applications is available on the iPad Pilot Applications page.

More Information

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