iTunes U is something I've discussed numerous times on the Windows Weekly podcast, but if you're not familiar, it's a wonderful educational resource, even if you're not into the Apple digital media ecosystem for some reason. Today, Apple announced that users have downloaded over 300 million iTunes U audio and video recordings, which is pretty amazing.

In just over three years, iTunes U downloads have topped 300 million and it has become one of the world’s most popular online educational catalogs. Over 800 universities throughout the world have active iTunes U sites, and nearly half of these institutions distribute their content publicly on the iTunes Store. New content has just been added from universities in China, Hong Kong, Japan, Mexico and Singapore, and iTunes users now have access to over 350,000 audio and video files from educational institutions around the globe.

“iTunes U makes it easy for people to discover and learn with content from many of the world’s top institutions,” said Eddy Cue, Apple’s vice president of Internet Services. “With such a wide selection of educational material, we’re providing iTunes users with an incredible way to learn on their computer, iPhone, iPod or iPad.”

Created in collaboration with colleges and universities, iTunes U makes it easy to extend learning, explore interests or learn more about a school. A dedicated area within the iTunes Store, iTunes U offers users public access to content from world class institutions such as Harvard, MIT, Cambridge, Oxford, University of Melbourne and Université de Montréal. iTunes U gives anyone the chance to experience university courses, lab demonstrations, sports highlights, campus tours and special lectures. All iTunes U content is free and can be enjoyed on a Mac or PC, or wirelessly downloaded directly onto an iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad.

More info: iTunes U - a powerful distribution system for everything from lectures to language lessons, films to labs, audiobooks to tours — is an innovative way to get educational content into the hands of students.