Mobile Learning: mobile technology and education

The majority of educational institutions will find using mobile learning a major challenge. They are busy marking tests, ensuring students do not cheat, checking plaigarism and copyright issues and arguing about classroom management. Mobile Learning adds another layer of headache they do not want to address.

Educational institutions that focus on student learning, student success, student growth and/or preparing lifelong learners recognize the potential of mobile learning. They recognize a tool that can help students at risk to be more productive. A tool to shift the infamous bell curve to the left. Something similar to what the calculator did in the 70-90’s to those who found arithmatic a challenge: it allowed them to become productive in the industrial economy. Consequently, emerged the growth of franchises like Walmart and Mcdonalds who can now hire anyone without worrying about giving the wrong change.

Should we worry about devise, OS, size of screen, application to use, etc…? Yes for now. But very soon, Web 2.x (or another name) will emerge to solve this issue. The browser will handle the conversion to make the transition seemless. HTML 5 started the process by unifying the video format. I am sure, in no time, OS/browser/device will not be an issue. Google is trying it with its Chrome OS and Apple with its iOS. Who will prevail? I do not care, as long as they make knowledge avaialble seemlessly to me.

Should educational institutions worry about the design of the learning activity? Yes. But not because of the emergence of mobile technologies. They should worry because the present educational methodologies serves a dying breed. Robenson, Clifton, Siemens and others are talking about it.

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