Mobile Learning

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Mobile Learning

Mobile learning can be defined as any sort of learning which employs wireless handheld technology. The recent development in mobile technology allows students to access information and learning materials from anywhere and at any time. With some great benefits, mobile learning is becoming more important in the current educational system. However, there are some limitations which cannot be omitted.

One major advantage of mobile learning is its high flexibility. This mainly stems from the advances of size and weight of mobile devices. Compared to books and personal computers, mobile devices are easier to hold and have higher portability [1]. According to Kukulska-Hulme and Traxler [1], learners are able to use mobile devices in dissimilar learning settings, ranging from informal situations to more formal situations. In other words, students can use their phones during spare moments. Boyes [4] believes that this property can allow them to make good use of ‘dead time’ for studying. In addition, the touch screen display, as the main interface by which students control the mobile devices, might improve their efficiency of study. However, this could as well be a shortage of mobile learning, which will be mentioned afterwards. Last but not least, the mobile devices can be useful tools for assisting disabilities in studying.

Although mobile technology is developing rapidly, there is no specialized device which is designed for learning. Ally [3] indicates that mobile devices are mainly designed for occupational purposes but not educational and training purposes at present. Consequently, these tools may not satisfy all the educational needs. For instance, the small screens of the devices, with poor readability, are inconvenient for students to read articles. In the meanwhile, long term usage can possibly cause serious health problem, such as short sight and blood-brain barrier. According to Boyes [4], battery consumption and storage capacity are also...
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