In Australia the shift in vocational training and education is away from campus based to delivery within the workplace, i.e. on-the-job training. These learners are going to need training material to support their learning. M-learning (mobile learning) used effectively will assist in their training needs and my first post in this week mlearning series will examine how.
What We Know
Most mlearning work with learners, regardless of the training area, have highlighted the power of videos for instructions. Learners can watch videos, at their own pace, as often as required, while actually preforming the task e.g. practicing how to tie knots, cutting hair, setting up or using equipment.
Opinions differ on text based material on mobile devices from those who believe the zoom feature of the iPhone means that material developed for the web will need little or no change for use to people that believe the exact opposite (e.g. limited amount of text per screen, essential text only).
How It is Being Done
Mobile technologies are undergoing rapid change, and organisations embracing mlearning will need to factor this into their equation. A solution for today, may not be the best in a years time so the key will be to ensure training materials are adaptable to a range of devices (e.g. mobile phones, PDAs, iPods).
Examples of m-learning in workplace training include:
- Trainee hairdressers in the UK are learning how to cut hair (Watch the video to see how) – by mobile phone. Read Stuart Smith, who is involved with this work, thoughts on mobile learning and choosing the mobile device.
- Workplace trainees from Pilbara Iron are learning how to use machinery – by PDA. Watch this video interview of Bob Hunter, from Pilbara TAFE, where he explains and demonstrates why he uses PDAs with students.
Want to read more on mobile technology and m-learning?
Check out last week’s posts on:
- Are UMPCs Going to Convert Courses from Paper Based to Digital?
- Mobile Web Usage is Increasing – How Will You Use It With Students?
- You Need Spyglasses – Are you Serious?
- Barcodes, RFID and NFC technology – use in education and training explained in Sue language!
- What can we do about policies that are stifling innovation in educational uses of technology?