The University of Missouri’s Journalism school has made an unprecedented policy change. They have made it a requirement for incoming freshmen to purchase a portable electronic device with Internet capability. The school chose to adopt this policy because they will offer podcasts of lectures and other supplemental materials to their students.
This is the first time a university has made it a requirement of students to purchase such devices. Both Duke and Abilene Christian University have made these devices a part of their curriculum, yet they provide their students with the device upon registration.
This is not the case at the University of Missouri. The university is requiring the students purchase these products with their own money. With the rising cost of textbooks, adding another monetary requirements may not be the best way to go. The university justifies their decision by focusing on the high number of students that already own the required devices.
I personally think this is a wonderful idea for the journalism school. This is a way in which the technological savvy field can intertwine with a university setting. However, I feel the university should not force students to pay for such expensive devices when tuition increases every year. Requiring more out-of-pocket money from the students is only going to increase the average debt of college graduates.