It's back to school time and for most students that means a backpack heavy with books. One Calgary College has a hi-tech solution to the problem.

While many students still pour over paperwork and tout heavy tomes, Tracey Messeum isn't breaking her back at school this year.

The CDI College student has all her books, lessons, and notes on her school supplied iPad.

"It makes it a little more enjoyable," says Messeum. "You are not thinking ‘Oh I gotta lug these books to school'. You can learn at the park and you carry your whole backpack to the park."

Every student starting classes this year at CDI College will get an iPad. The cost is built into the tuition which normally includes books, but now includes the iPad and digital books instead.

It doesn't just save students from back pain but, according to campus director Glenn Van Iderstine, it saves the college money and frees up space.

"Within 24 months, the number of books that we bring in and have to manage and ship back to publishers is immense," says Van Iderstine. "That whole system is going the way of the dodo bird."

The iPad project, field tested at CDI's Calgary campus last year, was such a success the College is taking it Canada wide. CDI is the first post secondary school in Canada to give tablet computers to all of its students.

"In Calgary, about 1,500 students are going to get iPads," says Van Iderstine, "and about 9,000 nationally."

While the students say the tablet computers are a welcome tool, they also admit they're also a welcome diversion.

When asked if she ended up playing Angry Birds on days when she's bored, student Johanne Gendron would not incriminate herself.

"Ha ha ha, I am not admitting to nothing!"

Once they graduate, the students get to keep the iPads.