Identifying Emerging Issues in Mobile Learning in

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Identifying Emerging Issues in Mobile Learning in Higher and Further Education: A report to JISC

by Jocelyn Wishart and David Green Graduate School of Education University of Bristol

Contact author: j.m.wishart@bristol.ac.uk 0117 3314497

List of Contents
Summary ................................................................................................................................ 1 Acknowledgements ................................................................................................................ 1 Introduction ............................................................................................................................ 2 Methods: Developing Future Scenarios .................................................................................. 8 Results: Future Scenarios Developed ...................................................................................10 Discussion of Emerging Issues for Mobile Learning...............................................................23 Conclusions ...........................................................................................................................27 References ............................................................................................................................28

Summary
This report describes the results of a series of discussion workshops where experts and experienced practitioners explored visions of how mobile technologies and devices will influence practice in Higher Education (HE) and Further Education (FE) in the near future. The workshop series was funded by the UK’s Joint Information Systems Committee (JISC) as part of the Emerge Community within JISC’s own Users and Innovation research programme. This exploration focused on identifying emerging issues for the sector arising from the increasingly likely large scale use of Smartphones, PDAs and camera phones by learners in HE and FE, both on campus and in the workplace. This was carried out through scenario generation using three different futures prediction tools in three workshops. The following issues were identified as being the most likely to appear in the future of mobile learning five years from now: the increasing use of ‘just in time’ and ‘as and when necessary’ training. the need for always on affordable connectivity and power. increased support for an approach to teaching and learning that is more collaborative than didactic. concerns over scalability; learning communities are divided over whether there is a role for mobile devices in formal teaching, especially in large groups and lectures. concerns over the merging of personal and vocational information and practice. the strong match between affordances of mobile devices and learning opportunities in work based and experiential learning across the board. increased peer to peer networking and collaboration. the need for design specifications for a secure online all-purpose data repository accessible by different browsers according to device at hand. Other emerging issues for mobile learning in HE and FE include both ethical and practical implications. These include cultural barriers and resistance to change amongst lecturers and associated teaching professionals. Examples are: fears for the erosion of lecturers’ personal time; concerns over security related to the increasing amount of information and number of images to be stored and privacy issues related to the ease with information can be captured in a range of locations. There is also the opportunity to reconsider assessment practices, recording the process of developing an assignment rather than simply marking the product. One last issue, one that is in need of urgent attention, is the need for the development by students and staff of agreed practice, establishing how mobile devices are to be used responsibly in institutions before inconsiderate use or ignorance of their potential to enhance learning results in banning...
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