IATEFL 2012 conference – mobile learning

Nicky Hockley via video recording introduced the meat of the session. She described some things mobile learning (mlearning) is not:

  • mlearning != mobile phones
  • mlearning != on the move
  • mlearning != apps

Expanding on the above she conceptualised five dimensions of mlearning:

on the move<————————————–>in class

rich content <————————————->discrete content (e.g. single apps)

push content<———————————->pull content(students find content)


strategic use<————————————–>discrete use

In response to Lindsay Clandfield’s question of practical examples of mlearning,  the Open University(OU) representative (Agnes Kukulska-Hulme) raised the use of out of class practice giving an example of students using OU made programs for listening and speaking practice outside of class. The primary school head (Gillian Penny) mentioned getting pupils to share their learning with parents and her school will soon allow pupils to take mobile devices home.

An interesting question was raised by Agnes Kukulska-Hulme, how do we design for mlearning? What kinds of new activity can learners do? e.g. collect data, share data.

A couple of relevant issues popped  on my twitter feed (via this article by Audrey Watters) as I was writing this post – learner’s work through e-portfolios and assessment tools. Falling into the strategic use end of the spectrum admittedly these are, at the moment, more teacher-centric issues rather than learner-centric.

There were a few questions from the audience that I found interesting – how can mlearning adapt to rapidly changing, multi-cultural student body? If mlearning is anywhere, anytime are  teachers expected to work anywhere, anytime? How does mlearning apply to adult literacy?

So although there was some quick coverage of practical applications of mlearning the session would have been enhanced if a set time was devoted to this. By all accounts Giselle Santos’s talk was well received, if anyone knows of a write up of that talk let me know.

Other mlearning related stuff  coming up are a workshop by  Claire Hart and Kristen Acquaviva on Thursday 22 and a talk by Karin Tıraşın also on Thursday 22.

Video of Enhancing students’ language acquisition through mobile technologies:


Pre-conference learning technologies special interest group(SIG) post by Bruno Andrade that has a link to this great resource.

Bruno Andrade has also written up a post on Giselle Santos’s talk.

Penny for your thoughts

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