As part of the Mobile Learning course, the team has conducted a survey among the acquaintances of the participants. Good and elaborate explanation was presented by my colleague learn123 on his blog. I recommend you visit it for more background information and meaningful findings. In this post, I will present some additional findings based on my own analysis which should complement my colleague’s observations. My line of thought is driven by developing an mLearning implementation plan, Consequently, I read the results of the survey from the preservative of identifying preparation work needed for the success of the plan.
In questions 4 to 9, and on average, 81 participants skipped the questions that checks their experience with mobile learning. This is almost 53% of the participants do not know or are not aware of an educational use for mobile devices. Since 89% of the participants work in an education related field (check question 1), then I may conclude that mobile devices are not popular in the educational field. Taking this finding forward, it is obvious to me that we need to promote and market the use of mobile devices more effectively for a successful implementation in education. This promotion will involve awareness activities as well as training.
Question 20 presents interesting findings about the teaching paradigm of the participants. 65.5% indicated that the mobile device is a cause of distraction, while 29.1% indicated that might be a tool for cheating. This means, to me at least, that there are good percentage of the participants who still think about using mobile devices in a traditional sense of education that still focuses on a teacher lead instruction. Going forward, it is obvious, at least to me, that the success of a mobile implementation plan should be accompanied by a change shift activities that introduces a new educational paradigm that is suitable for mLearning. This will include new assessment methodologies as well as, more social/collaborative/connected teaching concepts.
Question 21 has another significant finding. 52.8% of the participants, does not see a correlation between mobile learning and cloud computing. In addition, 41 participants refrained from answering. Combining both, a staggering 73.8% of the participants do not appreciate, or know about, the effectiveness of cloud computing in the use of mobile devices. In my opinion, a successful use of mobile devices in learning or otherwise, should depend and integrate with cloud computing. This result, again to me, indicates that the success of any mobile implementation plan in education should be accompanied by proper training and awareness about cloud computing and its use in the mobile world as well as education.