Lynn’s 2012 January Term partners with Apple, Inc. and launches Citizenship Project

Apple, Inc. implementing Challenge Based Learning concepts with Lynn University students this January

Published Nov. 15, 2011

Lynn University’s fourth annual two-and-a-half week January Term (J-Term), also called The Dialogues of Innovation, sends students around the world – and around our local community – to learn in some unconventional, exciting and often experiential ways. This year’s J-Term will take that concept to the next level, boasting new initiatives including a partnership with Apple, Inc. and the inaugural Citizenship Project, required for all first-year students.

The Citizenship Project

The Citizenship Project: Commitment to Community, is Lynn’s Quality Enhanced Plan (QEP). It requires all first-year students to take one of 22 courses in the Dialogues of Innovation J-Term that focuses on a civic issue, problem or topic and will engage in experiential learning opportunities and community service work with local, community-based partners. Lynn students will study homelessness, environmental sustainability and urban renewal while working directly with local organizations including Gumbo Limbo, Habitat for Humanity, the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office and the United Way.

Download The Citizenship Project PDF for additional information – including a full list of courses and the speaker series with on-campus presentations by Senator Bob Graham on Jan. 4, 2012 and Robert Watson on Jan. 10, 2012.

iPad Pilot initiative

This summer, several members of Lynn’s senior management visited the headquarters of Apple, Inc. for an executive briefing and exploration of areas where Apple’s innovative technologies could help enhance students’ learning experience.

Among other outcomes, the dialogues resulted in Apple specialists coming to Lynn’s campus in October to conduct an iPad Pilot initiative using Apple’s Challenge Based Learning (CBL) concepts. They taught 16 Lynn faculty members how to implement CBL in their classrooms this January when a group of Lynn students (istudents) will be using the concepts to complete their Citizenship Project courses.

In their training, the 16 faculty members each received an iPad along with hands-on training in applications and challenge-based concepts that include: coming up with the big idea, narrowing to the essential questions, committing to the challenge, reflections from students and faculty, attainable solutions, documenting evidence via creative videos and assessment which occurs at regular intervals throughout the process.

“The intent is to engage faculty and students more fully in our Citizenship Project during our January-Term courses, which are 2 ½ weeks long,” said Chris Boniforti, Lynn's chief information officer. “Twenty two sections of the Citizenship Project allow individual faculty to create her/his own perimeters and small student groups can focus on real yet different problems across the various courses. We expect the 16 faculty in the iPad Pilot program to generate some creative challenges and solutions, connecting students with multiple community partners and beyond.”

Challenge Based Learning

In 2008, Apple [Education] partnered with New Media Consortium (NMC) to develop CBL. Since then, CBL concepts have been used and implemented in middle schools, high schools and universities across the globe to solve real-world problems.

CBL is “an engaging multidisciplinary approach to teaching and leaning that encourages students to leverage the technology they use in their daily lives to solve real-world problems through efforts in their homes, school and communities,” notes Apple’s website. It “is collaborative and hands-on, asking students to work with other students, their teachers, and experts in their communities and around the world to develop deeper knowledge of the subjects students are studying, accept and solve challenges, take action, share their experience, and enter into a global discussion about important issues.”

This hands-on, experiential, real-world approach to education parallels Lynn’s dedication to international, individualized and innovative learning – and in particular the philosophy behind the Dialogues of Innovation.

The Dialogues of Innovation

Aside from The Citizenship Project that includes 22 local, civic-based J-Term courses, Lynn’s 2012 Dialogues of Innovation is offering 28 on campus courses and 7 travel domestic and abroad travel J-Term courses to upperclassmen.

International travel course highlights include: 

  • Bali Service Project
  • Hemingway’s Cuba

Domestic travel course highlights include:

  • ESPN’s Winter X Games Experience in Aspen, Colo.
  • Disney Institute: Manufacturing the Magic in Orlando, Fla.

Local course highlights include:

  • City and Surf Photography
  • Top Chef Lynn University
  • What is it Really Like to be a Teacher?
  • The Second Inning: The Miracle League and Baseball Dreams
  • Comic Book Superheroes across the Disciplines
  • The Dawn of Rock Music: A Cultural Study
  • Fun-Filled, Hands-on Science

Download The Dialogues of Innovation PDF for additional information and a full list of courses.