What is Mobile Learning?

For several years now, a revolution has been taking place in software development that parallels similar shifts in the music, publishing, and retail industries. Mass market is giving way to niche market, and with it, the era of highly priced large suites of integrated software has shifted to a new view of what software should be. Mobile operating systems such as Android and iOS have redefined mobile computing, and in the past three to four years, the small, low-cost software extensions to these devices — apps — have become a hotbed of development. Simple but useful apps have found their way into almost every form of human endeavor, and a popular app can see millions of downloads in a very short time. The huge market for apps has spawned a flood of creativity that is instantly apparent in the extensive collections available in the app stores. Online app marketplaces provide an easy and highly efficient way to deliver software that reduces distribution and marketing costs significantly. Mobile apps continue to gain traction in education because they are particularly useful for learning as they enable people to learn and experience new concepts wherever they are, often across multiple devices.

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(1) How might this technology be relevant to the educational sector you know best?

  • Apps are in many respects very useful learning materials. Not least when it comes to stuff that must be learnt by heart: anatomy, formulas, conjugations, vocabulary etc. etc. What is missing so far to my mind is that universities/university teachers take up the challenge and develop high quality apps. I don't say that the apps available are bad on the whole, but some of the stuff really needs an expert within the subject to guarantee the quality of the contents. - ole ole Oct 12, 2014
  • "By 2025, mobile natives — students born after the Apple iPhone went to market — will be entering higher education, bringing with them an era of mobile learning....fluid learning — the flow of learning between mobile and non-mobile devices." http://tinyurl.com/olwmfhn - Mark.fink Mark.fink Oct 15, 2014
  • With the advent of increasingly larger and more powerful mobile devices such as the iPhone 6 plus, the difference between mobiles and tablets has become increasingly blurred, and therefore most, if not all, of the issues that are covered in the tablet section can equally be applied to mobile devices. - damian.mcdonald damian.mcdonald Oct 27, 2014

(2) What themes are missing from the above description that you think are important?

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(3) What do you see as the potential impact of this technology on higher education?

  • Not sure if mobile learning is still an issue. Augmented reality, QR codes, location-based services may be ... - jochen.robes jochen.robes Oct 27, 2014
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(4) Do you have or know of a project working in this area?

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