The Academic Multimedia Services (AMS) is a service provided to the faculty and students of American University through the University Library. The mission of the Academic Multimedia Services team is to offer AU faculty and students an increased interactive experience with teaching and learning beyond the classroom by utilizing media on a number of platforms, such as iTunesU, Blackboard, and other web-based mediums.
One of the main outlets that the Academic Multimedia Services delivers academic content is via iTunesU, part of the iTunes application that is available for free from Apple. American University's iTunesU page has a number of course pages of class based lecture content, supplementary academic content such as featured speakers, technical training, tutorials as well as general information about the university. Students can download audio and/or video files, known as podcasts, one at a time or subscribe to an entire course and have new items download automatically as soon as they become available. Faculty members have an opportunity to record lectures, guest speakers, and present research and publications for their students, as well as to a worldwide audience through iTunesU.
iTunesU is an accessible learning tool for students with disabilities as well. iTunesU allows for learning with iPod, iPhone and iPad, which offer features to help vision-impaired students find the information they need (using VoiceOver on iPhone and iPod touch, and spoken feedback on iPod nano and iPod shuffle). As for students with physical or motor-skills needs, iTunesU brings the classroom to them, so they can learn at their own pace and in a more comfortable environment.
The University Library and the Academic Multimedia Services team anticipates that iTunesU will present students and faculty with another useful interactive service that provides the AU community a way to incorporate industry standard technologies for research, teaching and learning. The library also hopes that AU faculty will utilize the Academic Multimedia Services team to promote their own research advances, publication accomplishments and lecture skills and techniques.
Academic Multimedia Services' goal is to allow faculty the ability to teach further, move beyond the traditional boundaries of the classroom with their lectures, research and publications. The use of these mediums will enhance American University's contributions and reputation to the global academic world.