B-School via iTunes?

When Apple launched iTunes U earlier this year, the idea was to give institutions of higher learning an innovative way to get audio and video content out to their students. But by making hundreds of lectures from elite schools available online for free, Apple is also reinvigorating the minds of the masses.

A Los Angeles Times piece on the iPod Lecture Circuit revealed that millions of people””all separated from the classroom by age, distance or circumstance””have a chance to learn from some of the world’s top scholars. Although universities have posted recorded lectures on their internal websites for years, giving students a chance to brush up on their classes or catch ones they missed, 28 colleges and universities””including the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Stanford and Yale””now post select courses at iTunes U.

The universities want to promote themselves to parents and prospective students, as well as strengthen ties with alumni. Prospective MBA students can peek inside the classroom of the schools they are interested in and see if the attraction is warranted. From the comfort of home, a café, or even the car, you can listen to discussions on Social Entrepreneurship at Stanford; check out a Wharton lecture on Home Truths for the Housing Market; or listen to Yale Business and Management alumnus Roland Betts weigh in on the State of Private Equity.

In Tech Learning, Dr. Steve Yuen blogs about podcasting in his classroom and lauds the medium’s great potential in teaching and learning. This flexible delivery method can’t be beat for delivering high quality learning materials. Administrators and professors alike view the idea of giving away courses that traditional students pay thousands of dollars a year for both as a free promotional tool and as a public service.

You already know B-school is going to cost an arm and a leg; why not get a head start by crashing a class or two at iTunes U?

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