Mobile devices such as laptops, tablets, Smartphones, and e-readers have rapidly taken their place among the indispensable tools of our times. Their special magic is that, no matter where we happen to be, we can use them to communicate with others and access information at will.
So, what does that mean for learning? We know that e-learning, which relies on tethered desktop computers, is transforming the way in which workplace learning is delivered. Is m-learning just an extension of that trend? A lot of research is underway to help answer that question. At the moment, the answer seems to be: Yes and No.
Yes, it broadens opportunities to deliver distance learning by removing physical tethers – making it truly possible to access learning materials from virtually anywhere. But, at the same time, No – because mobile technology seems best suited to different kinds of learning than desktops.
What’s the sweet spot for work-related m-learning? It’s NOT the delivery of e-learning courses on a smaller device. Small screens, different navigation controls (no mouse!), slower download speeds, more frequent interruptions in service, and environmental distractions are some of the issues that make learning on mobile devices challenging.
Mobile devices can be better used to access:
- Short (1-2 minute) just-in-time, task-oriented tutorials
- On-demand podcasts
- Quick reference resources such as specification sheets, product descriptions, checklists, step-by-step procedures, and documents of all kinds
- Short Message Service (SMS) updates and reminders
- Immediate help from colleagues when a problem is encountered
Androcom Can Help
We’ve given a lot of thought to creating m-learning programs that complement other resources in a corporate learning toolkit. In particular, we can help by:
- Identifying how m-learning can contribute to your learning program
- Providing instructional design for m-learning tutorials
- Preparing quick-reference resource materials
- Advising on how to support your m-learning channel over time
- Evaluating the success of your m-learning activities