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Mobile Technology in Learning. Keith Crespo & Nouf Faisal ETEC 510 Dr. Farmer. Introduction.

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Mobile technology in learning

Mobile Technology in Learning

Keith Crespo & Nouf Faisal

ETEC 510

Dr. Farmer


Researchers are in a dilemma about whether mobile learning should be introduced in higher learning institutions as a form of educating students. Criticism of M-learning includes lack of proper knowledge in using mobile devices, lack of evidence that M-learning works and skepticism about M-learning. However various new articles about M-learning address these criticism and strongly support the use of M-learning in higher learning institutions they include,Mobile learning as an evolution of E-learning, Clarification of mobile learning, Clarification of mobile learning and Mobile learning in higher education as a new educational tool. A new form of learning should be adopted by teachers for use with their students.

Mobile technology in learning

Educational technology has generated new tools and approaches to learning in the classroom. One new concept that is relatively new in education is mobile learning. Mobile learning can be described as any learning that occurs when facilitated through a mobile device (Harrington et al., 2009). Examples of portable devices include mobile phones, i-Touch or i-Pads, mp3 players, tablets, or portable computers.

Defining mobile education
Defining Mobile Education

There are different characteristics of mobile devices that should be stated in order to learn more about mobile learning. Mobile devices have become universal and pervasive in our society that it has made an impact on obtaining knowledge. For instance, mobile devices have begun the trend of learning by finding information at a specific time instead of obtaining information for long-term memory (Traxler, 2007). An example would be a fifth-grade student wanting to know who the second President of the United States was. The fifth-grade student can use an i-Touch to find the answer by searching the internet.

Clarification of mobile learning
Clarification of mobile learning

The research paper by El-Hussein, M. O. M. And Cronje, J. C. Seeks to clarify the meaning of mobile learning. The authors approach was to critically examine a selection of documents that relate to mobile learning. The authors argue that to comprehensively understand and define mobile learning their outset should be formed and its key components separated and arranged under three different concepts: A conceptualization of mobile learning, the first step of research involved exploring the wider context of mobile learning. Mobile learning in higher education, the second step involved identifying the technology, learner (who are nomadic and able to interpret learning materials) and learning material as well as mobile technology such as portable devices. The third concept involves examining the mobility and dynamism of the learning process and the flow of information.

Mobile learning as an evolution of e learning
Mobile learning as an evolution of E-learning.

The research paper by Grane et al claims that mobile learning can be termed as an evolution of E-learning. Research has been done on both M-learning and E-learning looking at how they have evolved and a comparison and contrast on the two has been drawn. Learning has always had a mobile character in it, and hence the authors seek to establish a difference between what is termed as mobile learning today and what was regarded as mobile learning traditionally.

Evaluating mobile education
Evaluating Mobile Education

Following the widespread reception of mobile technologies in learning, it is paramount to evaluate mobile education to see if it does benefit teachers as well as students when it comes to learning. However, it is difficult to create a perfect evaluation because it depends on how we define a good evaluation. Some guidelines that Traxler (2007), recommend are an efficient, ethical, and authentic. He believes the evaluation should access what learners really experience from using mobile devices. In addition, the evaluation should be economical in terms of cost and time. These guidelines can help execute more evaluations and studies on mobile devices in the future. While there are limited studies on this topic, we will discuss what is known about mobile education in elementary school and higher education.

Mobile learning in higher education as a new educational tool
Mobile learning in higher education as a new educational tool

  • The authors Mcconatha D, Praul M, and Lynch M illustrate that mobile learning or M-learning as it has come to be known is a new tool in the academic store to assist students and teachers in the learning world. The authors assess the challenges, possible methods and potential of using M-learning in a college classroom. The article further discusses an empirical evaluation on the effectiveness of M-learning in a college classroom.

  • From the research carried out those students who used M-learning tool demonstrated higher levels of knowledge on the subject covered as compared to students who did not use the tool. This results support the notion that use of mobile learning makes a positive and significant difference in the outcome performance of students. The main obstacle of M-learning is that it heavily relies on students owning the necessary hardware

The use of mobile technologies to support learning in large campus university classes
The use of mobile technologies to support learning in large campus university classes

The research paper by Oliver, R. seeks to show the advantages of using mobile and wireless technologies in large classes. The authors approach is; technology facilitated learning: technology is an affordable way of providing meaningful learning for learners and it provides appropriate learning support. The focus is on mobile learning and how it distinguishes itself from the conventional forms of E-learning. There being a growing number of devices that can be used for mobile learning, the authors aim is to show how these devices can provide opportunities to enhance learning.

Examples of types of learning that involve devices
Examples of Types of Learning that Involve Devices campus university classes

Mobile devices can be employed into E-learning through numerous ways. While different teachers have different styles and conceptions of teaching, they can also have diverse ways of utilizing mobile devices. Mobile devices can be used in education to support the transmission and delivery of strong multimedia material (Traxler, 2007). A teacher can post a video for the students to watch on their own time for homework on their mobile device. Other teachers may use mobile devices as a way of discussion via text or possibly real-time dialogue. Web 2.0 has also been used to improve learning. For example, students may text their reaction and opinion to an online article that the teacher chose for discussion.

Conclusion campus university classes

It is indisputable that technology affects our lives in more than one way. Technological advancement is known to bring in changes that maybe positive or negative, but many are the times that technology has resulted in positive change. As illustrated in this paper the adoption of M-learning is set to bring in positive change in the delivery of education. Either from the various researches that have been carried out, those who adopt M learning have performed better or had an easy time teaching or learning.

References campus university classes

  • El-Hussein, M. O. M. & Cronje, J. C. (2010). Defining mobile learning in

    the higher education landscape. Educational technology and society, 13(3), 12-21.

  • Grane, M., Olmedo, K., Crescenzi, L., & Suarez, R. (2010). Using mobile devices

    in E-learning programs.

  • Herrington, J., Herrington, A., Mantei, A., Olney, I.W., & Ferry, B. (2009). New

    technologies, new pedagogies: Mobile learning in higher education. Faculty of

    Education, University of Wollongong.

  • McCarty, S. (2005) Spoken Internet to Go: Popularization through Podcasting.

    Jalt CallJournal, 1(2): 67-74.

Mobile technology in learning
. campus university classes

  • Mcconatha, D., Praul, M., & Lynch, M. (2008). Mobile learning

    in higher education: an empirical assessment of a new educational tool.

    The Turkish online journal of educational technology,7(3).

  • Salomon, G. (1991). Partners in cognition: Extending human intelligence with

    intelligent technologies. Educational Researcher, 20(3), 2-9.

  • Traxler, J. (2007). Current state of mobile learning. International Review

    on Research in Open and Distance Learning, 8(2).

  • Oliver, R. (2007).Using mobile technologies to support learning in large campus university classes. In ICT: providing choices for learners and learning: Proceedings of ASCILITE Singapore. 788-798. Retrieved December 1, 2012 from

    Research Online Database.