A review of literature, 2005-2012
Learning with mobile devicesNew Media Consortium (2012):Time for adoption of mobile apps inhigher education is one year or...
Very brief overview of full paper, available on AERA Repository:Liu, M., Geurtz, R., Karam, A., Navarrete, C., andScordino...
Research questions1. What issues have researchers beeninvestigating on using mobile devicesfor teaching and learning with ...
Adult learning Participants/ focus age 18+ K-12 level excluded University/ college levelincluded PD/ corporate/ other ...
Process to identify researchSearched journalTOC andAbstractChecked across Edresearch databasesResult: 103Articles• 91 high...
(super-condensed version)
Investigating affordances ofmobile technology useUsing mobile technology tosupport academic contentlearningUser percept...
mLearning literature review findingsDifferent learning environmentsTraditional education (Cobb et al., 2010)Blended learni...
mLearning literature review findingsMultiple instructional strategies (Chen & Huang, 2010)Change the learning settingMobil...
mLearning literature review findingsLearning Gains (Cavus & Ibrahim, 2009 )Assessment (Segall et al., 2005)
mLearning literature review findingsDifferent subjectsLanguage learning (Jong et al., 2010)Natural sciences (Hwang et al.,...
mLearning literature review findingsUser Perceptions (Rogers et al., 2009)Positive (Kismihók & Vas 2011)Negative (Corlett ...
Fun-sized version
0510152025302005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012611081528 278mLearn empirical studies
mLearning is still in nascent stages• There is need for theoreticalframework• Most studies are exploratory innature
Investigative growth• Few studies quantitative analysis (experimental design)• Lack of longitudinal studies• Small partici...
Technical issues (Franklin et. al. 2007)User resistance (Ryu & Parsons, 2012)
Learning gains (Başoğlu & Akdemir, 2010)mLearning in support ofspecific content areas (Munoz-Organero et al., 2012)New pos...
Bridge to educational theoriesConnect research and practiceRepresentation oftablet technologyNeed for longitudinal studies...
Adult Mobile Learning AERA 2013 Paper Presentation
Adult Mobile Learning AERA 2013 Paper Presentation
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Adult Mobile Learning AERA 2013 Paper Presentation

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This is a presentation given at the 2013 AERA Meeting in San Francisco summarizing a chapter that was recently published. The chapter details a comprehensive literature review of research articles published on mobile learning with adults.
Citation for full chapter:
Liu, M., Geurtz, R, Karam, A., Navarrete, C. and Scordino, R. (2013), Research on Mobile Learning in Adult Education. In W. Kinuthia & S. Marshall (Eds.) On the Move: Mobile Learning for Development. Charlotte, NC: Information Age Publishing.

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  • I am willing to bet that everyone in this room has at least one cell phone, and a large proportion of those are smartphones. I don’t think that anyone is in doubt that these mobile devices have become quite prolific so far in the 21st Century. But to give you an idea of just how prolific they have become, consider that there are already more active cellular subscriptions than people in the world.And by the end of this year, there will be more internet-connected mobile devices than people in the world.As this graph from Business Insider shows, while personal computer sales are steadily inclining, smart phone and tablet sales are rising at much faster rate. This suggests that more and more people are accessing the Internet over their mobile devices.
  • As computing becomes increasingly mobile, we are seeing a change in the way we live and conduct business.As members of the field of education, we wonder what the potential impact mobile devices might have on education. According to the New Media Consortium’s 2012 Horizon report, the time for adoption of mobile apps in higher ed is predicted one year or less. In a recent paper series on global trends in mobile learning, UNESCO concluded that mobile devices are poised to have a unique impact in education.
  • It looks like there is a lot of potential for mobile learning, so there is a need to look at what sort of research is being done in the area. Our research group did this by conducting a literature review. Today, Angela, Cesar, and myself from the University of Texas Learning Technologies Program are going to share with you some of our findings from this paper we wrote with our professor, Dr. Min Liu, as well as another doctorial student, RenataGuertz, who are not presenting. Presenting today
  • This review of literature focused specifically on adult mobile learning. We settled on some basic research questions to guide our investigation. First…What are the issues that researcher have been investigating on using mobile devices for adult learners?Second, what is the research evidence-if any- on how mobile technology can enhance teaching and learning with adult learners?And finally, What are the critical issues to consider when using mobile devices to enhance teaching and learning for adult learners?
  • To focus our scope, we decided on some criteria.We planned on only reviewing articles from peer reviewed journals from 2005 until about mid 2012, which is when we stopped collecting articles. We only included studies that collected and analyzed data from adult participants, including qualitative and quantitative methods. We defined adult learning to be studies that used participants who were over the age of 18, not including anything in K-12. We included higher ed, as well as PD and corporate education. To be part of our review, studies must have used a mobile device which we defined as Cellular phones, Smartphones, and other handheld devices, whether they were the sole technology used or whether they were used in conjunction with other technologies. We did not include laptop studies.
  • In order to find articles, we searched ed tech journals online, skimming table of contents and abstracts for a variety of keywords. To supplement this search, we used those keywords to search Ed Research Databases. When it was all said and done, we had 103 articles that fit our criteria, including 91 in higher education settings, and 12 in corporate or PD settings.
  • In this literature review, 3 main themes were revealed:Investigating affordances of mobile technology use Using mobile technology to support academic content learning User perceptions of mobile technology 
  • In presenting these finding we listed some references as examples.One primary theme revealed was:Different learning environments are supported with mobile device: Traditional education Blended learning e-learning Field-based learning Work-based learning Important to the field and work-based studies, the mobile devices supported just-in-time resource access in field-based learning. This highlighted the capacity to access data in location specific or situated learning for greater sense making.  For example, in field-based learning study, Wu et al. (2010) investigated a clinical learning model with fourth-year nursing students and found that the “mobile guidance system” improved the learning achievement  Include but less representative were ubiquitous discussion forums as an informal learning environment.
  • Another strong theme was the multiple instructional strategies that may be involved in m-learning.Connected to the different environment theme, m-learning allows for different teaching and learning approaches enabled by:Mobility that may change the learning setting and Mobile learner independence Collaboration is also supported for discursive learning modes, provided through the communication support of mobile devices, an thus extending instructional offerings beyond traditional learning approaches. Distinctly, the just-in-time provision with m-learning is concurrent within multiple studies.
  • Another theme for m-learning was assessment via mobile devices. The use of mobile devices to test student learning and receiving feedback, as an integral component in the learning process, was investigated. Researchers suggest that the promotion learner meta-cognition is enabled in the assessment-feedback process.   Learning gains in various studies were found using quantitative methodology, with pre and post-test assessment. There is some initial evidence indicating significant learning gains attributed to the enhancement of teaching and learning of content afforded by mobile devices  
  • Different Subjects were studied as found in this review.  Language m-learning was found to involve complex processes which rely on authentic language input, and thus provides for more creative language output, real-life practice, and thus provides for more listening and speaking opportunities.  As an example, in science m-learning, Hwang et al 2010 found that laboratoryefficiency was significantly improved through the delivery of just-in-time information to students working on complex chemistry experiments. Also,Wyatts et al 2010 found that students could continue to receive instruction even when in remote clinical settings, which are a vital component of developing a practice in the medical professional field. Informal learning and game-based learning studies were also found but not as prevalent.
  • Numerous studies focused on user perceptions For example Demirbilek, 2010 conducted a mobile user study which included participants from eight different European countries. There were studies with positive user perceptions that suggested enthusiasm, engagement and greater learning support. For example, Kismihók & Vas (2011) conducted a survey study in which the participants were generally positive about m-learning.  However, other studies indicated negative perceptions that revealed:(1) Hardware and usage issues, (2) Alternative resource unavailability, (3) Issues of the appropriate use of devices, (4) Skepticism of and resistance to the technology (5) Limitations to the types and amount of work required to be completed on the devicesTesting mobile learning systems was also a minor theme, as studies were conducted on stand-alone apps created for a mobile device as unique mobile systems. In a number of studies the m-learning objects were used as either a supplement or replacement for materials already being used in the regular classes.
  • In this review of literature, we focused on examining data-based studies on mobile learning for adults.
  • Our review showed that mobile learning research is gaining momentum, as you can see by the increase in studies since 2005. This particular review ended in March of 2012, which accounts for the lower number in the 2012 column. Since then, quantifiable more studies pertaining to mobile learning have made print.
  • While this review shows that mobile device use for adult education has occurred in a variety of learning settings, it also suggests that mobile learning itself and research on the subject are still in nascent stages. Though theoretical pieces about mobile learning have debated the application of Activity Theory, Situated Learning Theory, CoP theory, transactional distance theory, and the theory of reasoned action, we observed that few studies were situated by a theoretical framework specific to mobile learning for adults.Additionally, many of the studies in the review were exploratory in nature, and as such…
  • …have helped to identify a vast need for future theoretically situated empirical research.Out of 103 total studies, 7 quantitative studies included more than 200 participants, 3 mixed methods included more than 200 participants.5 quantitative and mixed methods studies had a sample size smaller than 10. Sample size varied based on the environment within which the study was conducted.We identified several limitation and allowance trends in the reviewed studies.
  • One trending limitation of the literature involved technical issues -- like batteries running out and general lack of knowhow. For example, Franklin et. al. 2007 noted that the devices did not always fully charge and therefore limited the time of use. Fewer technical issues were reported in more recent studies, reflecting the overall improved performance of mobile devices in general, and for mobile learning specifically.[CLICK]Another limitation and critical focus of interest was user resistance. A number of studies, especially in early research, addressed the attitude and disposition of participants indicating user resistance and frustration. More recent studies measuring user perception show a shift towards user acceptance, demonstrating a clear trend that improved overall user inclination toward mobile learning is on the rise. (Demirbilek, 2010; Kismihók & Vas, 2011; Ryu & Parsons, 2012; Wang & Wu 2011)
  • Learning gains were noted in several studies indicating that mobile leaning has the capacity to provide learners with real-time scaffolding and timely delivery of content outside of traditional learning spaces. These gains were measured using pre and post-tests and quantitative statistical analysis. We observed 13 studies which reported specifically on learning gains.[CLICK]Another noted trend is that mobile devices lend themselves more to use in specific content areas. A relatively higher number of studies in language learning, sciences, and health sciences suggests that mobile device incorporation in these areas more efficiently and easily facilitates instruction and learning.[CLICK]Finally, increased bandwidth capacity and enhanced features like SMS, camera enabled devices, video, and audio capacity provided a broader range of learning opportunities explored in various studies. This revealed an overall trend that the enhanced learning through the multi-modal, ubiquitous, and just-in-time affordances of mobile devices increase as new and more advanced mobile technologies introduce new possibilities for education.
  • Adult Mobile Learning AERA 2013 Paper Presentation

    1. 1. A review of literature, 2005-2012
    2. 2. Learning with mobile devicesNew Media Consortium (2012):Time for adoption of mobile apps inhigher education is one year or less.UNESCO (2012):"Mobile devices – because of theirubiquity and portability – arepositioned to influence teaching andlearning in a way personal computersnever did. "
    3. 3. Very brief overview of full paper, available on AERA Repository:Liu, M., Geurtz, R., Karam, A., Navarrete, C., andScordino, R. (2012). Research on Mobile Learning in AdultEducation: A Literature Review from 2005 to Present.
    4. 4. Research questions1. What issues have researchers beeninvestigating on using mobile devicesfor teaching and learning with adultlearners?2. What is the research evidence onhow mobile technology can enhanceteaching, learning, and training foradult learners?3. What are the critical issues toconsider in using mobile devices toenhance teaching, learning, andtraining for adult learners?
    5. 5. Adult learning Participants/ focus age 18+ K-12 level excluded University/ college levelincluded PD/ corporate/ other adulteducationMobile devices Phones (smart and basiccellular) PDAs/Tablets/otherhandheld devices Standalone or as part oflarger system Laptops not includedPeer-reviewed data-based research published between 2005 and2012
    6. 6. Process to identify researchSearched journalTOC andAbstractChecked across Edresearch databasesResult: 103Articles• 91 higher education,including graduateprograms• 12 corporate orprofessionaldevelopment
    7. 7. (super-condensed version)
    8. 8. Investigating affordances ofmobile technology useUsing mobile technology tosupport academic contentlearningUser perceptions of mobiletechnology
    9. 9. mLearning literature review findingsDifferent learning environmentsTraditional education (Cobb et al., 2010)Blended learning (Shen et al., 2009)elearning (Chandran, 2010)Field-based learning (Uzunboylu, 2009)Work-based learning (Akkerman & Filius, 2011)
    10. 10. mLearning literature review findingsMultiple instructional strategies (Chen & Huang, 2010)Change the learning settingMobile learner independenceCollaboration (Chen et al., 2011)Just-in-time communication (Lan & Sie, 2010)
    11. 11. mLearning literature review findingsLearning Gains (Cavus & Ibrahim, 2009 )Assessment (Segall et al., 2005)
    12. 12. mLearning literature review findingsDifferent subjectsLanguage learning (Jong et al., 2010)Natural sciences (Hwang et al., 2010)Health field (Wyatt et al., 2010)Informal learning (Huang et al. 2010)Game-based (Schwabe & Göth, 2005)
    13. 13. mLearning literature review findingsUser Perceptions (Rogers et al., 2009)Positive (Kismihók & Vas 2011)Negative (Corlett et al., 2005)Testing mobile learningsystems (Wang & Wu, 2011)Custom created systems (Du et al., 2010)Unique mobile systems (Osawa et al.,2007)
    14. 14. Fun-sized version
    15. 15. 0510152025302005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012611081528 278mLearn empirical studies
    16. 16. mLearning is still in nascent stages• There is need for theoreticalframework• Most studies are exploratory innature
    17. 17. Investigative growth• Few studies quantitative analysis (experimental design)• Lack of longitudinal studies• Small participant numbers024681012141618200 to 10 11 to 50 51 to 100 101 to 200 200+StudiesParticipantsQuantitativeQualitativeMixed
    18. 18. Technical issues (Franklin et. al. 2007)User resistance (Ryu & Parsons, 2012)
    19. 19. Learning gains (Başoğlu & Akdemir, 2010)mLearning in support ofspecific content areas (Munoz-Organero et al., 2012)New possibilities for multi-modal,ubiquitous, and just-in-timelearning increase withenhanced access andfeatures (Akkerman & Filius, 2011)
    20. 20. Bridge to educational theoriesConnect research and practiceRepresentation oftablet technologyNeed for longitudinal studiesNeed for consensus of terminology withdevice studies

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