Critical usability-evaluation of mobile device applications for m-learning purposes

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In Proceedings of the INTED2010 (International Technology, Education and Development Conference) held in Valencia (Spain) on the 8th, 9th and 10th of March, 2010.

In Proceedings of the INTED2010 (International Technology, Education and Development Conference) held in Valencia (Spain) on the 8th, 9th and 10th of March, 2010.

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  • 1. Critical usability-evaluation of mobile device applications for m-learning purposes Romana Feichtinger Michael Tesar Benedikt Salzbrunn Robert Pucher
  • 2. Contents
    • Introduction
      • Motivation, working hypothesis, goals and objectives
    • Centerpiece
      • Background, research design and data
    • Conclusion
      • Accomplishments, future directions
    Benedikt Salzbrunn - 2010
  • 3. Motivation
    • A lot of research about mobile learning has been done lately
    • Innovative mobile devices are nowadays often presented as part of the solution to all learning issues
    • Due to mobile applications learning can take place almost everywhere
    Benedikt Salzbrunn - 2010
  • 4. Working hypothesis
    • Usability tests of different m-learning software applications on the Apple iPhone
      • Apple iTunes U
      • Moodle MLE
      • 24/7 Spanish Tutor
    • Comparing technically advanced users with “rookies”
    • Comparing users of “high-tech” touch screen mobile phones with users of basic mobile phones
    Benedikt Salzbrunn - 2010
  • 5. Goals and objectives
    • What kind of usability issues do m-learning solutions have to deal with?
    • Can the tested m-learning applications improve learning quality and flexibility?
    • Do participants with different technical affinities deal with the same problems while using m-learning solutions?
    Benedikt Salzbrunn - 2010
  • 6. Background
    • Apple iTunes U
      • Standard iTunes application with e-learning content
      • Designed by Apple to be used on PC/Mac and iPhone/iPod
    Benedikt Salzbrunn - 2010
  • 7. Background
    • Moodle MLE (“mobile learning engine”)
      • Open-Source plugin for existing moodle sites
      • Compatible with all mobile phones, access via browser
    Benedikt Salzbrunn - 2010
  • 8. Background
    • 24/7 Spanish Tutor
      • Free iPhone app(lication)
      • Only available for iPhone/iPod
    Benedikt Salzbrunn - 2010
  • 9. Research design and data
    • „ classical“ usability test
      • Adequate participants have to fulfil predefined tasks
      • iPhone screen, audio and participant recording
      • Questionnaires at the beginning (classification) and the end of the test to acquire statistical information
    Benedikt Salzbrunn - 2010
  • 10. Research design and data
    • Additional eye-tracking
      • via head-mounted eye-tracking system
      • to record and evaluate the participants’ scanpath
    Benedikt Salzbrunn - 2010
  • 11. Accomplishments
    • M-learning solutions have to deal at least with the same usability issues as e-learning applications as for example
      • Navigation, wording, menu structure
    • Additionally m-learning applications need special attention regarding
      • Display resolution, readability, touch-screen handling
    • The easier m-learning solutions are to work with the more they get accepted by the user and can even be fun to use
    Benedikt Salzbrunn - 2010
  • 12. Accomplishments
    • Participants with different technical affinities in general deal with the same problems
    • At the end of the test all of the participants got used to the handling of the iPhone, advanced iPhone users finished the test a lot more quickly
    • The three tested m-learning solutions only partly convinced the participants in case of improving learning quality and flexibility
    Benedikt Salzbrunn - 2010
  • 13. Future directions
    • Design of various user-friendly m-learning interfaces regarding the usability-test output
    • Implementation of a test course based on moodle MLE
    Benedikt Salzbrunn - 2010
  • 14. Thank you for your attention
    • If there are any questions please
    • do not hesitate asking them
    • funding agency: