A theory of learning for the mobile age: learning through conversation and exploration across contexts

Sharples, Mike; Taylor, Josie and Vavoula, Giasemi (2010). A theory of learning for the mobile age: learning through conversation and exploration across contexts. In: Bachmair, Ben ed. Medienbildung in neuen Kulturräumen: die deutschprachige und britische Diskussion. Wiesbaden: VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften, pp. 87–99.

URL: http://www.open.ac.uk/personalpages/mike.sharples/...


Most adults and adolescents in developed countries now own mobile phones and media devices, and for many people in developing countries a mobile phone can offer the only means of sending long distance messages. In a parallel development to the spread of personal technology, since the early 1980s schools, colleges and universities have experimented with handheld technology for learning, including classroom response systems, data probes, and handheld writing tools. Universities allow students to bring laptop computers to lectures and some schools are now providing pupils with Personal Digital Assistants and tablet computers. As personal mobile technologies for learning become more widespread, studies are starting to show evidence of the value of incorporating mobile devices in teaching and learning (McFarlane, Triggs and Yec 2008; p.7) and also substantial issues, including conflicts between informal learning with personal devices and traditional classroom education (Sharples 2007). Children are developing new skills and literacies enabled by mobile devices, such as SMS texting, moblogging (writing diaries and weblogs on mobile devices) and mobile video creation. A new generation of location-aware mobile phones will offer further possibilities, of education services and educational media matched to the learner's context and interests.

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