Tuesday, November 29, 2005

eTXT trial results

Well, I have had an exciting couple of weeks. Each morning, I used eTXT™ to post out questions to participants in the trial. I would check about 11am each day to see how many responses to the questions posted in the morning have been received. Participation rates were good. 10 of the 19 participants continued to put in answers for most of the questions and 2 other participants texted in intermittently.

In summary, in week one, I texted 2 food safety questions a day to participants along with a short text message explaining what to look for in the question type.. I trialled multiple choice, short answer, fill in the blank, sorting and matching questions types. In week two, I texted out questions on how the participants perceived the food safety question from week 1. Questions included what question type the participants preferred; how each question type displayed on the mobile phone screen; which questions were easiest to read and which were easiest to respond to plus how many questions a day would be manageable in a workplace situation.
The main findings from the trial was that participants preferred questions that were easy to read and easy to respond to. Participants were prepared to view questions that required scrolling on their mobile phone screens if the answers to the questions were in turn easy to input. Multiple choice questions were favoured most, followed by sorting and matching question types. Although short answer and fill in the blank questions displayed well on mobile phone screens, participants found it difficult to compose text messages that would fit into the 160 character limit to fully answer these questions. Participants also had a preference for no more that four questions a day to be delivered to their mobile phones.

Undertaking the eTXT™ trial was a very good experience. Although eTXT™ was very easy to use, the type of questions, the number of questions that can be posted out on each day and the user experiences in responding to the various question types was very enlightening. Much work needs to be done to ensure that questions are written so that they are easy to understand, display well on mobile phone screens and are simple to respond to and mark.

Trialling formative question types has provided important information on how to best use eTXT ™ to support the mlearning at CPIT. Text based mobile phone communications supported with synchronous voice interaction with distance students are solid platforms to begin with. Future developments to extent the uses of mlearning with work-placed based learners can now be spring boarded for CPIT from projects next year to offer either food safety or bakery unit standards.


Leigh Blackall said...

good job.
I've been using this free sms service: http://www.intazaar.com.au/intazaarsms/app/steps/INDEX/index.aspx
not sure how it works internationally, here's a list of other sms services: http://del.icio.us/tag/sms

Selena said...

Hi Leigh,

thank you for the url. I will check it out. Peter Mellow from Auckland University or Technology has also reported that his StudyTxt system seems to be receivable by 95% of Australian cell phone users, so I will look into that as well.


Jerry Gene said...

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