The Principles of Mobile Learning
As the science and technology world is advancing daily, the impact of their products tends to facilitate a lot of noticeable and essential growth in many other fields. The learning and academic world, of course, is not an exception as the people; students, and teachers, involved in this field make use of tech-related and tech-built concepts and products to bring teaching and learning into the digital space.
One of the numerous concepts that link academics to tech is digital learning also known as Mobile Learning. As we all know, “mobile” means something movable or portable. Therefore mobile learning can also be described as the type of learning that can be accessed from literally anywhere and anytime. This idea of Mobile learning has many undeniable advantages in today’s society. An example is “Massive Online Open Courses – MOOCs” which enables users to gain access to courses both free and paid ones, enabling them to broaden their knowledge in their various fields of profession or interest. This can be considered a quantum leap into the digitalization of the world.
However, to properly utilize this great opportunity and get the most out of it, there is the need to consider certain principles and follow some procedures. Although the digital space is a free world where everyone is bound by little or no rules and regulations, nevertheless, we must be guided by self-discipline and also possess some skills to achieve something tangible from the internet. In this article, we will examine the principles that guarantee a fruitful experience in mobile learning.
Divisions of Principles of Mobile Learning
These principles can be divided into two parts as there are two parties involved in mobile learning; the teaching party and the learning party. They are:
- The Students’ Principles: this refers to all the principles that the student(s) must obey and the attributes they must possess before they can partake in learning activities.
- The Teachers’ Principles: this refers to all the principles that the teacher(s) must obey and the attributes they must possess before they can be seen as qualified to teach the students. Unlike in physical learning where the students have to put in more effort to develop, the teachers here have more essential roles to play than the students who are learning.
- The Platform Principles: the platform on which the teaching and learning process takes place also has to meet some criteria as it also plays an important part in the learning process especially to make learning easy.
The Students’ Principles
- Internet and Computer Literacy: A student who is interested in mobile learning must be able to operate computers or phones. Inability to carry out basic operations such as browsing the internet, signing up for courses, and downloading resources will end up not being able to participate in any mobile learning schemes.
- Interest and Determination: According to a Yorùbá adage, “You can force a horse to the river but you can’t force it to drink water”. This adage applies to learning as well, studies show that a person is most likely to succeed when they’re doing what they have an interest in. It is also very important to cultivate the habits of determination and discipline because the internet is full of distractions.
- Adaption: Students must be able to adapt to any learning environment they find themselves in. The reason for this is that you find it easy to learn when you’ve familiarised yourself with your learning environment and that’s why blending with your peers on a learning platform is important as it aids efficient learning.
The Teachers’ Principles
- Transparency: A teacher who has a positive mindset towards teaching and wishes his students well must be transparent in his teaching approach in the sense that “simplicity” must be a priority to such a teacher. Mobile Learning requires simplicity, a lot, to be sincere. Some teachers prefer showing off by speaking or writing large English words other than simple ones that will make the course simple and very much easier to understand.
- Liveliness: Officially, liveliness is not part of the criteria for knowing a good teacher. But because students feel comfortable around jovial teachers and as a result, they find it easy to learn from them, teachers should be encouraged to facilitate a little bit of playing and some use of colloquial language when writing or as it may apply. Online classes or courses should not be a nightmare but something students look forward to.
- Diversity in Knowledge: A teacher who takes part in Mobile learning must also be a good researcher. A large percentage of mobile learning students are versatile students in institutions of higher learning and graduates and they often have questions and challenges to throw at teachers. The inability to answer their questions may lead to awkward situations. Therefore, teachers must know varieties of concepts within and outside of their field to be able to provide satisfaction to students.
- Authenticity: Finally, a teacher must confirm and must be able to prove the authenticity of everything he teaches in the sense that he must also exude a level of confidence in his teaching. The teaching of unconfirmed theories may affect the career of the student and even the reputation of the teacher. Therefore, a teacher must confirm the authenticity of the contents before feeding them to his students. This will strengthen the trust and belief people have in Mobile Learning.
The Platform Principles/Criteria
- Accessibility: As the name implies, Mobile Learning platforms must be made accessible to students anywhere around the globe. It must also be easy to access simply because many people don’t enjoy doing things that will occupy their time and still stress them. A good learning platform should be accessible at all times. Accessibility is the number one priority of a good learning platform.
- Facilities: A good learning platform must have necessary facilities suitable for learning e.g simple interface, writing facility and many more all integrated into one space. This will make it easier for students to learn. It must also be a safe space where the private information of both the teachers and the students is safe.
Once the students, teachers, and the platform involved in Mobile learning meet all criteria and principles and also play their roles accordingly. Mobile learning will be made easy, interesting, and accessible to all.