Rules for Use of WMU on iTunes U

Purpose

The purpose of this policy is to establish guidelines and rules for the use and operation of iTunes U at Western Michigan University. Access to iTunes U is a privilege, not a right, and is granted with restrictions and responsibilities for use. 

Scope

These rules apply to all users who have accounts enabled for iTunes U at Western Michigan University.

Introduction

iTunes U is a free service provided by Western Michigan University in cooperation with Apple, Inc.  Apple, Inc. provides 500 GB of storage space for the operation of iTunes U at Western Michigan University.  iTunes U hosts educational content, including course lectures, presentations, events, and other related materials. iTunes U is divided into a public and private site.  Access to the private site is restricted to WMU faculty and the students enrolled in their courses. The public site hosts lectures, presentations, tutorials, and public events of interest to the WMU community. iTunes U at WMU supports instruction, research, and community access.

Access to iTunes U at WMU requires iTunes a free software application for Windows or Macintosh. Content can be viewed or listened to using a computer, an iPod, iPhone, or iPad.

Copyright

Information technology does not monitor iTunes U for possible copyright violations.  It is up to the department and individuals using the iTunes U service to assure the uploaded content meets copyright regulations. If a department or individual becomes aware of a copyright or licensing issue, they may contact the information technology to have the offending content removed.

Western Michigan University respects intellectual property rights.  Please do not upload copyrighted content without a copyright release.  Use of licensed music requires a release and may require the content creator to pay licensing fees to the appropriate entities. See Western Michigan University’s copyright and intellectual property policies.

Content management

Information technology will monitor bandwidth and storage requirements for the operation of iTunes U and reserves the right to  request removal and/or will remove recorded files or podcasts if those podcasts require large amounts of storage space.  The decision will be made in consultation with the content creator or department.

iTunes U content deletion

This guideline does not apply to content on the iTunes U public site for WMU.  WMU has established a private site using iTunes U.  This private site hosts academic content for courses.  Student access is available for the semester in which they are enrolled in the class.

Private site content will be deleted two years after a course is offered.  Faculty will be notified 12 to 16 weeks in advance of the deletion of content.

Faculty members are responsible for downloading and archiving any student material they need to keep for grade challenges, etc.

Standards

iTunes U supports the distribution of compressed audio and video files. Apple recommends using the following formats for your iTunes U audio and video content:

Audio files (AAC, MP3) with appropriate file extensions (.m4a, .mp3). For best results during playback, Apple recommends converting MP3 files greater than 32 megabytes (MB) to AAC format. For AAC audio files, Apple recommends the following specifications:

  • Audio format: Baseline Low-Complexity Profile with AAC-LC (Music)
  • Data rate: Up to 160 Kbps
  • Channels: Stereo in .m4v, .mp4, and .mov formats
  • Output sample rate: 48 kHz
  • Encoding quality: Better

Video files (MPEG-4 with H.264 compression) with appropriate file extensions (.mp4, .m4v, .mov). For best results with iPod, Apple recommends using MPEG-4 with H.264 compression with the following specifications:

  • Video format: MPEG-4 with H.264
  • Data rate: Up to 1.5 Mbps
  • Image size: 640 x 480 pixels
  • Frame rate: 30 frames per second
  • Key frame: Every 24 frames
  • Audio tracks: Baseline Low-Complexity Profile with AAC-LC audio up to 160 Kbps

File size uploads are a maximum of 1 GB.  File size is directly proportional to download times.  It is recommended to create content with file sizes of 500 MB maximum.   Apple recommends creating content for “iPod” which maximizes quality versus file size.

Requesting a WMU iTunes U account

  • Request an iTunes U account
  • Login using your Bronco NetID and password
  • Select public or faculty course request
  • You will be contacted within one business day to assist with your iTunes course creation.

Contact information

Media Services
Office of Information Technology
(269) 387-5020

Document action

Reviewed/approved by: Academic information technology committee, April, 2011
Reviewed/approved by: Faculty senate, April, 2011