The CITE, a blog published by the National Association of College Stores, takes a look at the intersection of education and technology, highlighting issues that range from course materials to learning delivery to the student experience. Comments, discussion, feedback, and ideas are welcome.

Monday, August 17, 2015

Mobile Learning Isn't Just about the Device

Mobile learning isn’t necessarily learning on the go or only performed on smartphones. Mobile learning is also not about the technology or just another form of e-learning, according to a pair of South African researchers.

“M-learning holds much promise and provides exciting opportunities for open and distance learning (ODL),” wrote the authors of the report Mobile Learning: Moving Past the Myths and Embracing the Opportunities. “In order to understand the opportunities, we first need to understand what m-learning is all about.”

For instance, the authors found that students do use mobile devices to learn while riding in a bus, but also when they are sitting at home.  Laptops and tablets should also be part of the mobile-device conversation, if they aren’t already.

In addition, the authors contended that mobile is not just for distance learning, but can be useful in the classroom. They found that m-learning doesn’t mean accessing course materials on a device or only using current teaching and learning methods.

“As with new phenomena, myths and misperceptions exist regarding what m-learning does and does not entail,” they wrote. “In order to understand the fundamentals of m-learning, we have to define what m-learning is by addressing the major misperceptions and outlining some of the possibilities that m-learning offers to the enhancement of open and distance learning.”

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