Let nobody say the administration of University of Missouri School of Journalism
is out of touch with its students. These profs understand that lectures, the scourge of college students since the Middle Ages, are so
, like, boring. Especially when they're at the ungodly hour of nine a.m.
So, starting this fall, incoming Mizzou journalism students will be required to purchase an iPhone
or an iPod touch
. No, silly, not for texting their friends during boring lectures. It's so they can download lectures and listen to them again!
"Lectures are the worst possible learning format," Brian Brooks, the associate dean of the j-school told
the Columbia Missourian
"There's been some research done that shows if a student can hear that
lecture a second time, they retain three times as much of that lecture."
Brooks added that the devices aren't actually required; the word "required" was just added to get the bureaucrats in Financial Aid to give extra cash to needy students who might not be able to buy an iThing on their own.
Some students have already begun to protest what they consider Apple's hegemony on MP3 players with, naturally, a Facebook group. Brooks claims that the only reason the j-school appears to favor iTunes over, say, Windows Media Player is because students seem to be more familiar with it.
As a journalist, albeit one who attended college back in the days before even Napster
(back then, we were dependent on our Walkmans
; sad, I know), I have to wonder about the wisdom of this plan. Yeah, lectures may not have always been exciting, but they did give me great practice in what I consider one of the most essential skills of this noble profession: taking notes.