Mobile Learning offers users the ability to access content from their devices wherever they are. That being said, how does one decide which content, and in what form, is suitable for mobile device viewing and on-the-go learning?
Designing good, usable content for mobile learning can seen to relate to the interaction design research (e.g. Jones & Marsden, 2006), which offers general principles for human-computer interaction on mobile devices. These have been supplemented by more specific findings from mobile learning projects (Naismith and Corlett, 2006).
These general principles are:
- create quick and simple interactions,
- prepare flexible material, that can be accessed across contexts,
- consider special affordances of mobile devices that might add to the learner experience (for example, the use of audio; or employing anonymity of the user),
- use mobile technology not just to ‘deliver’ learning, but to facilitate it,
- make use of the features in the mobile devices for voice communication, note-taking, photography, and time management.
It must be kept in mind that the learning content, (and not the mobile technology itself) must be the core focus of any mobile learning initiative.
- Once the learning objective is defined look at various ways of delivering content that will work towards that objective.
- Fragment the content into slivers of information, which can be consumed in 10 minute periods.
- See how audio, video and animation can be used to support the subject material
- Check for free app that provide interactive activities, which would reinforce the learning
- Locate and list veritable blogs and discussion groups which allow email entries for queries
Mobile learning opens subtle channels of communication, which can encourage students who don’t actively participate in classes to respond and express themselves. By exploring and testing new forms of content and exercises, you’ll come across ways to engage your learners both inside and outside the classroom.