iTunes U Frequently Asked Questions

What is iTunes U at NC State?

  • iTunes U is a partnership between Apple Computer, Inc. and North Carolina State University.
  • Apple provides us with storage space and a sophisticated framework for managing and delivering content.
  • We (the university community) provide the content itself.

What kinds of content are available?

  • iTunes U uses a technology called podcasting, which supports audio and video content.
  • Created by students, faculty and staff, this content is a mixture of curricula, information and entertainment.

How do I use iTunes U at NC State?

  1. If you do not already have Apple’s iTunes software installed, download the software and install it.
  2. After installing it, open a web browser and go to iTunes U at NC State.
  3. Click on the iTunes U at NCSU link, which will take you to our iTunes U storefront.

How do I subscribe to a podcast?

  1. Go to iTunes U at NC State.
  2. Click on the iTunes U at NCSU link.
  3. Explore the material that is available by clicking on the various links (images) in the main body of the page. Each link will take you to a page concerning one or more podcasts.
  4. When you get to a page devoted to a specific podcast that interests you, click on its Subscribe button. All current and future episodes of that podcast will show up automatically on your computer.

What does it cost?

  • There is no charge for using this service.
  • It is free to both content creators and subscribers.

Are there options other than using iTunes software?

  • Currently, no.
  • We are investigating other options, particularly for our visually impaired audience.

Will this content work with my Apple iPod?


What if I have a non-Apple media player?

  • iTunes U supports both AAC and MP3 for audio content.
  • All portable media players support MP3, but only a few support AAC.
  • The advantages of AAC over MP3 center around smaller file sizes for a given level of audio quality.
    AAC is more efficient, letting you store more content on your mobile player.
    There are other benefits as well (e.g., bookmarking content such as audiobooks).
  • The only video format that is supported in iTunes U is a subset of MPEG-4 appropriate for mobile devices. Fortunately, many mobile players that support video also support MPEG-4.

You can convert AAC audio content to MP3 using Apple’s iTunes software as follows:

  1. Select Preferences.
  2. Select Advanced.
  3. Select Importing.
  4. From the Import Using pulldown menu, select MP3 Encoder.
  5. Select OK.
  6. Close Preferences.
  7. In your iTunes library. highlight a file that you want to convert.
  8. Either control-click (Mac) or right-click (Windows) on the file.
  9. Select Convert to MP3.

Since iTunes copies content from our iTunes U site to your local computer, you have the ability to copy content onto your mobile player using the management software that came with your player.

  • On a Mac, control-clicking on a file in your iTunes podcast playlist will reveal a popup menu. Selecting Show in Finder will locate the file on your computer for you.
  • On a Windows computer, right-clicking on a file in your iTunes podcast list will reveal a popup menu. Selecting Reveal in Explorer will locate the file on your computer for you.

You can now copy this file onto your media player.

I am affiliated with North Carolina State University. How can I use iTunes U at NC State to publish my content?

  • Yes.
  • To have a feed created, visit the help desk
  • Your subject line should include the phrase “iTunes U Feed Request.”

Is iTunes U content copyright protected?

We do not use digital rights management (DRM) software to lock down content in iTunes U. The copyright ownership of the original media extends to the content delivered by iTunes U.

This means:

  • If you want to reuse content from iTunes U, you should ask for permission from the content creator or the university.
  • If you place your own content on iTunes U, you are not abdicating intellectual property rights to it (as far as is allowed by the university).

We are not lawyers. We leave this stuff to people who do this for a living.

How do I learn more about iTunes U?

We suggest going to Apple’s iTunes U education site.