M-learning : an educational practice that uses mobile technology
Today we live in a digital world and for this reason the need for a change in education is clearly justified. Technology is changing the way we live and it is starting to change the way we learn. In fact, educational technology is developing today and mobile-learning is one of those forms.
What is mobile-learning?
In order to facilitate learning and improve performance, educational technology started to use mobile technologies. Mobile-learning (abbreviated M-learning) is a type of education that combines mobile technology and other information and communication technology (ITC) to enable learning independently of where and when. So, M-learning is a new form of distance learning that uses mobile devices, such as mobile phones, tablets, iPods, personal digital assistants (PDAs).
A little bit of history
The idea of learning by using mobile devices exists since the beginning of the 2000s. But it could not be realized because a high diffusion of smartphones and tablets was necessary and the broadband coverage was insufficient. Today those problems have disappeared and M-learning starts to become more and more a part of our daily life.
What is the difference between E-learning and M-learning?
This is an often raised question when we talk about mobile learning. Generally, M-learning is considered an evolved form of E-learning. But it is more than that. In fact, this technology has its own terminology:
How M-learning improves education?
Mobile-learning offers many benefits:
- Flexibility and accessibility: Learners do not have to take into consideration the time and the place because learning can be practiced whenever and wherever they want. So, learners can access content on their mobile devices anytime and anywhere. Also, it is easier to use small devices such as smartphones or tablets for learning.
- Attractive and motivational: Learners prefer multimedia content, like videos and podcasts, because they can learn faster and at the same time have fun.
- Mobile learning offers the possibility to create online learning communities in order to work together from long distance.