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Using QR Codes and Mobile Phones for Learning Thomas McNeal Mark van ’t Hooft 2010 eTech Ohio Conference Columbus, Ohio Cell Phones

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using qr codes and mobile phones for learning

Using QR Codes and Mobile Phones for Learning

Thomas McNeal

Mark van ’t Hooft

2010 eTech Ohio Conference

Columbus, Ohio

cell phones
Cell Phones

Today phones are used for almost everything. Whether they are or not, people are using them like computers. They are no longer just for calling but also for surfing the internet, navigation, taking pictures, shooting video, playing games, sending text messages, checking emails and many other activities.

the geo historian project
Mobile wireless technology has drastically changed how we communicate. It also has the potential to be an educational tool for the classroom teacher.

The Geo-Historian Project utilizes wireless technology to link classrooms with local historical landmarks. Using cell phones, students can become video historians, creating a living history of real people and real places shared via wireless devices.

The Geo-Historian Project
our project
Our Project

The GeoHistorian project was created to:

  • Investigate cell phones as an educational tool;
  • Demonstrate how resource sites near and far (museums, zoos, etc.) can be valuable classroom resources;
  • Demonstrate how digital content can be used to amplify learning at such sites;
  • Give students the opportunity to create digital resources for their communities.
cell phones as educational tools
Cell Phones as Educational Tools
  • Students produce short video and audio clips and web pages for cell phones.
  • They also create QR or 2D codes that can be scanned by a cell phone reader. Once scanned, the video, sound, or web site embedded in the code will be displayed on the cell phone.
  • In this presentation we will share the tools we’ve used and show you how we created the QR codes, video clips, and mobile web pages.
trying it out
Trying It Out

We have not had the opportunity yet to implement the GeoHistorian project with students, but we will soon. In order to try out our ideas we created a learning activity using cell phones, QR codes, and digital content of the World War II Memorial in Washington DC (2009 NECC Conference).

so what do you need
So What Do You Need?
  • QR Codes
  • QR Code Creator and Reader
  • Digital Content
  • Mobile Website
  • Smart Phone
qr or 2d codes
QR or 2D Codes

Here is an example of a QR Code. It looks like a checker board with white and black squares. This code can be placed on a variety of surfaces such as paper and textile, and embedded in digital sources such as websites or video clips.

qr codes come in many shapes and sizes
QR Codes Come in Many Shapes and Sizes

QR Code

Sema Code





2d creators and readers
2D Creators and Readers
  • Kaywa: and
  • QR Stuff:
  • QuickMark:
  • ScanLife:
2d creators and readers scanlife
2D Creators and Readers: ScanLife
  • Navigate to ScanLife

  • Sign up for an account
  • Select your carrier
  • Select your phone
  • Follow on-screen directions for downloading
creating qd or 2d codes
Creating QD or 2D Codes
  • Scanlife makes it easy to create codes
  • Just log in and click “create codes”
  • Name your code and add your URL
  • Click “publish” and you’re done
  • Let me show you …

examples of 2d codes
Examples of 2D Codes

Users can create codes for video clips, sound clips, websites and just text.

Here are some examples

formats for video and audio clips
Formats for Video and Audio clips
  • There is lots of existing content you can link to, or you can make your own.
  • Smart phones from different carriers all have different operating systems and require different video and audio formats.
  • Windows mobile - Windows Media Video (WMV)
  • iPhone - QuickTime (MOV)
  • Android – Mpeg4 (mp4)
  • Audio - WAVE or WAV, short for Waveform Audio File Format
creating a mobile website
Creating a Mobile Website
  • Mobile website creators are also very useful for creating digital learning content for mobile phones. Examples are
  • Jagag:
  • Mobisitegalore:
  • Winksite:
  • Wirenode:
  • Zinadoo:
creating with wirenode
Creating with Wirenode

For our project we have been using Wirenode, which makes it easy to create rich mobile pages and mobile websites with minimal effort.

  • Sign-up for an account
  • Select create a website
  • Select a format
  • Save and publish to the web.
  • Make a note of the URL for your 2D code

Mobile websites creator - Wirenode

what s new google goggles
What’s New? Google Goggles!
  • Google Goggles lets you search from your cell phone simply by snapping a photo. Want more info on a product? Take its picture. Need info about a business? Photograph the storefront. Put simply, this thing packs some serious power, and its capabilities stretch far.
  • Still in beta stage
  • Only runs on Android phones right now.

Google Goggles


Thomas McNeal

Mark van ‘t Hooft

  • DVC Project
  • RCET:
  • WWII Memorial video:
  • Scanlife
  • Wirenode
  • Google Goggles