Here is information that can help you explore ideas regarding how you might use iPads in the classroom to enhance student learning or instructional efficiency.  You may also want to attend one of our iPad Apps for College Teaching workshops or access our list of iPad Apps for Postsecondary Educators.

Canvas Apps

There is a student-facing app (mostly to read/access the content in your modules) and a faculty-facing app that is just the Speedgrader.

To download and activate Speedgrader:

  1. Open the App Store
  2. Search "SpeedGrader"
  3. Tap "Install"
  4. When you open the App for the time, it will ask you to enter the URL you use for Canvas. For USF, this is
  5. You will then be directed to the USF NetID Single-SignOn page. Enter your NetID and password.
  6. You will be returned to the SpeedGrader log-in page. After you log-in, you will see the App's homepage with all of your courses displayed as notebooks. Tap on a course, choose an assignment, and grade directly in the app.
  7. Tip: By tapping the gear icon in the bottom-right corner of the page, you will be able to access Settings. In Settings you can choose different options for your grading.

iPad Apps Useful for Teaching

Free Apps

  1. OnLive Desktop – true PowerPoint, Word, and Excel via Windows7 desktop connection (like VPN), all for free (competitors: Doceri Remote, TeamViewerHD).
  2. Educreations – allows you to record audio screencasts, multiple pages, and draw/write like in Paint on the screen, on photos, etc.
  3. Evernote – capture notes in the cloud, and access by phone, iPad, or PC
  4. MightyMeeting – store PPT and videos for iPad presentation. Upload via browser or direct email (total storage of 100 MB).
  5. Dropbox – store files in the cloud and access later via iPad
  6. Dragon Dictation – voice recognition that translates to text
  7. Khan Academy – Access mini-lessons on topics from many disciplines, especially STEM
  8. ShowMe – View created lessons (like Khan's Academy) or create your own
  9. QuickVoice – Recorder for audio (useful for consultations with students)Pocket – offline reading of webpages (see also Instapaper)
  10. MyPoint app (Remote-Control for PowerPoint). Click here for configuration.

Not Free, But Still Useful

  1. Noteshelf - $5.99 – one of handwriting-capture apps for notetaking (competitors: Penultimate, WritePad)
  2. Neu. Annotate PDF+ - $0.99 - neuAnnotate is an iPad app that allows users to take notes, annotate, and draw on PDF documents (competitors: PDF Expert, iAnnotate)
  3. Explain Everything - $2.99 – screencasting (like Educreations) that allows showing websites as well.
  4. Attendance - $4.99 – take and keep attendance records; includes integration with photos.
  5. Skyfire Web Browser - $4.99 – Flash web browser. Note: Only websites on the company's inclusion list will be supported for Flash (thus, smaller websites will not work)
  6. Pocket Informant HD - $12.99 – integrate calendar, tasks, contacts, notes apps. Like a hyperlinked, interactive Day-Planner.

How to 'Shop' for Education Apps

  1. Download iTunes (Mac or PC)
  2. Go to & download iTunes to your Mac or PC
  3. Click on iTunes store in left navigation bar
  4. Click on App Store in top navigation bar
  5. Click on iPad or iPhone (near top)
  6. Scroll down and click on Education Collections
  7. Click on discipline
  8. Click on app to preview


  1. Go to
  2. Click on Browse App Store (bottom of page, far right column)
  3. Click on Education
  4. Click on Popular Apps

Advantage: Can search by alphabet if you know the app name
Disadvantages: Not sorted by discipline, lots of K-12 apps

Important Considerations

  1. Is this a "pad-unique" app (does the iPad interface offer a feature/tool/outcome that cannot be accessed/achieved by using a desktop)?
  2. Student learning styles/preferences?
  3. How can this be used to enhance the student learning experience?
  4. How can this be used to enhance instruction and/or instructor productivity?
  5. Learning curve (student and instructor)?
  6. Cost (student and/or instructor)?
  7. Output (save a local copy, accessible with generic applications)

Getting Started

  • Mirroring with AirServer ($3.99)
    • Go to and click on Download in top navigation bar.
    • Select Mac or PC version (7-day free trial available).
    • Download AirServer and run the installation.
    • In the AirServer Activation window enter your email address or your activation code.
    • If you purchased AirServer the email address will be your PayPal primary email address.
    • Click Activate. AirServer is now ready to use.
    • Connect your iOS device to your Mac/PC by opening your iOS device and double-tapping the home button. A sliding menu will appear at the bottom of your screen. Scroll left until you see the circular AirPlay button.
    • Tap the icon and a list of AirPlay enabled devices will appear.
    • The computer on which you installed AirServer will show up on this list. To connect, simply tap the name of your machine.
    • Both devices (PC and iPad) must be connected to the same network.
    • Note: Can also use this to mirror iPhone 4S/5.

  • Apple 30-pin to VGA Adapter ($29.00)
    • USF Computer Store (or rent from USF Classroom Technology Services, 974-2380, SVC 0061)
    • Disadvantage: you are tethered to location of VGA connector
    • Advantage: you don't need internet connection

  • AppleTV ($99.00)
    • Not an app but an external device.
    • Use the AirPlay feature to beam your iPad to a projector in the classroom.
    • No ongoing costs. Includes free streaming of Netflix if you own that service.

USF-Campus iPad Resources

  • USF Tampa Campus Library
    • Students (only) can check-out iPads for 3 hours with their student ID card.
    • Device cannot be removed from the Library.
  • College of Education iTeach Lounge
    • EDU 252, (813) 974-6816
    • iPad basic & advanced workshops
    • iPad rental for faculty