Had some time last week to reflect on my learnings from mLearn2007. I was in the North Island, completing third year interviews with apprentices, the last lot of interviews towards my PhD. I did a fair bit of driving pass the beautiful spring green paddocks around Wellington, Wairarapa, Masterton and Hawkes Bay. Traffic was light so there was time for some serious introspection.
Some items pertinent to my own teaching context and mlearning projects were:-
Ascendance of mobile phones as the tool used for the delivery of mlearning.
However, majority of phones still only capable of voice and SMS L
Interest from developing countries on the potential of mobile phones to improve access to learning for people who would not otherwise be able to access information we now take for granted in the developed world.
Severe disadvantage of mobile phones (as compared to PDAs) is their ‘locked’ or ‘walled garden’ telecommunication company’s imposed structure.
More papers on the perceptions of students to the concept of mlearning including primary school, ‘international’ and disabled students.
Maturity of mlearning projects using PDAs – especially in the UK.
The need to relate our learning about mobile learning to actual pedagogy in schools and tertiary education. How can mobile learning change things – for the better – in particular to engage students in taking more control of their learning via access to a wider range of resources than available in ‘traditional’ classrooms.
Educators still need to ‘show the way’ as students are focused on using their phone (a very personal item) for their own social needs.
Not as many papers on location based mlearning as last year.
Still limited use of web based sites for mlearning, so our mlearning project is still pushing the envelope.
iPhones are will challenge the way in which other mobile phones are designed.
Sue Waters has archived a collation of various perspectives on mlearn2007 on a wiki, made up of various links to elluminate sessions, blogs and twitter notes. The elluminate sessions were ‘attended’ by several keen practitioners who could not physically be at the conference. The way in which technology allows us to ‘revisit’ a conference or participate without actually being physically present shows possibilities for distance education. However, face to face interaction is still not replicable as it brings up all sorts of opportunities for serendipitous discoveries.