In this post we will continue to discuss the challenges of Mobile Learning. (Click here to read the first post on Challenges in Mobile Learning)
Isn’t this just a high-tech package for the same old dull and boring content?
With evolving learning tools, pedagogies must evolve too. From drawing on chalkboards to using OHPs (Overhead Screen Projectors), playing alphabet songs to computer learning, our methods of instruction change with changing technologies.
While current learning pedagogies are still trying to incorporate mobile learning methods, it is definite that today’s students lean more towards active discovery as opposed to age-old passive absorption. And mobile learning is all about providing interactivity in learning.
If the goal is education, content cannot be “dull and boring”. Learning and learning material must be dynamic for it to be assimilated by the information-overloaded students of today.
Flashcards, quizzes, podcasts, videos, historical speeches, graphic timelines, real-time global collaboration, satellite maps… a whole interactive encyclopedia of information is available in a few clicks. Using it effectively just requires some creative application.
What about the digital divide? Not every student is tech savvy.
While it is valid that some students still have no access to technology, what is also true is that mobile technology is now globally available and pervading every aspect of our lives.
In the 2009 Parent-Teen Cell Phone Survey, conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates International, 75% of 12-17-year-olds now own cell phones (up from 45% in 2004).
Implementation of m-learning methods early in schools is also an effective way to overcome this digital gap. Classrooms provide the ideal equal learning ground, with students able to mimic peers and quickly learn from each other. Mobile learning will also enable students to exchange data, find information and collaborate, all vital skills for today’s wired world.
How will I measure learning effectiveness?
The same way you do today. Ask questions on lessons that have been revised, have students write papers and assign projects which require subject understanding to be completed.
Additionally choose mobile learning applications that enable you to create content which you know will be of value to your students. Some applications, like Mobl21 provide you with the flexibility to create notes and flashcards and even monitor which learning material your students are working on.
While new technologies are always exciting, creating the habit of using the mobile phone for learning, requires effort and persistence on the part of both the teacher and the student.