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  • Part of a broader portfolio of work across the University supporting the mobile learner, with many advances over the last year: Library 2.0 mobile, monitoring activity by StudentHome mobile, Study Skills material and new designs among others. Further acknowledgements during presentation.
  • We cannot dictate to our students what method they employ to access their content and services, so a wide variety of technologies to be explored and supported – exploring commonalities where possible – such as the Opera Mini/Mobile web browser technology, simplifying web views and allowing you to ‘zoom in’ to areas of interest. The learner is widely regarded as the mobile element in the equation, the technologies support this. We can look at the devices by class – loosely: mobile phones; smartphones/Personal Digital Assistants (PDAs); (Internet) Tablets and Ultra-mobile PCs (UMPCs). Current educational use of mobile learning primarily in school sector due to govt. funding, equipment tends to be uniform and supplied (sometimes reclaimed leading to issues over personalisation and appropriation). Different devices offer differing feature sets – dependent on operating system and the applications used. More devices are now catering for better web browsing, and the mobile web is becoming more usable – Internet Tablets, iPhones/iPod touch and other developments leading in this regard. To explore use of mobile technology, AACS have assisted in packaging an emulator system, and this and other physical devices are available in the Library Digilab and are discussed by the Mobile Technologies knowledge-sharing group.
  • Mobile Learning projects have been particularly successful when mediated by a face-to-face element, and in our university, this means that the role of ALs and peer support is very important. There has been some pilot work with ALs undertaken by Student Services, and also some research in the CETLs. Mobile Learning has also been shown to benefit the practice-based and fieldwork/residential areas in particular.
  • Podcast support is now a broader service area (colleagues might have seen the stand at the Learn About fair). To create podcasts as part of the course offering, LTS Media and Sound & Vision can offer advice, and the producer co-ordinating the podcast support there is Martin Chiverton. KMi are working on a directory of podcasts, also to make these more visible to the public where appropriate. The VLE’s role in this is to provide the delivery mechanism, through a Moodle module – iPodcast, which will be enhanced to incorporate transcripts (growing use of lyrics support in devices and players) and made more suitable for the OU’s web delivery needs. There is a cross-over here with the Digital Audio Project being led by Disabled Student Services.
  • KMi are working on a directory of podcasts, also to make these more visible to the public where appropriate. The directory that is currently in development also allows for podcast (media file) hosting as well as a transcoding service that will take a variety of media filetypes and convert into podcast files (both in size and format).
  • Presence and status updates becoming more popular (whether Twitter texting in from mobiles is useful is debatable in an educational context). Will look forward to seeing how MSG is adopted, and whether to build in connectors to other mobile instant messaging systems. User-generated content for future development – enabling users to adopt citizen journalism methods and familiar technologies such as multimedia messaging (MMS) to include and discuss rich media – particularly useful for capturing practice and fieldwork. A staff development session (EPD in the Digilab) will be available on this in May 2008, using the mediaBoard tools. GPS becoming more important (not just for car navigation), in the same way that camera phones outsold digital cameras, GPS-enabled technology will become more prevalent – allowing rich media to be location-enabled – useful in national programmes such as Biodiversity Observatory . Phones also now using Google Maps and cell and wifi triangulation techniques. Web 2.0 sites such as Shozu looking to integrate location info.
  • Mobile Learners may also be Online and Offline learners, but will certainly interact with peers learning in this way. We need to consider these different approaches and provide more appropriate content where possible. Once such example is to package web-based content for use where there is poor or intermittent connectivity.
  • Offline Moodle supports the broadest definition of mobile learner, where they have no fixed workstation or learning space – so being able to take course material to internet cafes etc. via USB is a viable option. Work so far has been discussed and presented to the Moodle Community and been well received in the MoodleMoot 2007 and the concept of synchronising content (not assessment or social elements) has been proved and now needs to be packaged in a similar way to what is available to OpenLearn users. Offline Moodle part of collaborative work including Moodle on a stick and Mobile Moodle, part of future partnership work. Next development stage is to integrate synchronisation of forum messages, and allow usage akin to FirstClass Personal and archive discussions and best practice from previous presentations. This is under discussion for the OU model, but will certainly be released to the Moodle community to benefit users in Sub-Saharan Africa and elsewhere.
  • Presence and status updates becoming more popular (whether Twitter texting in from mobiles is useful is debatable in an educational context). Will look forward to seeing how MSG is adopted, and whether to build in connectors to other mobile instant messaging systems. User-generated content for future development – enabling users to adopt citizen journalism methods and familiar technologies such as multimedia messaging (MMS) to include and discuss rich media – particularly useful for capturing practice and fieldwork. A staff development session (EPD in the Digilab) will be available on this in May 2008, using the mediaBoard tools. GPS becoming more important (not just for car navigation), in the same way that camera phones outsold digital cameras, GPS-enabled technology will become more prevalent – allowing rich media to be location-enabled – useful in national programmes such as Biodiversity Observatory . Phones also now using Google Maps and cell and wifi triangulation techniques. Web 2.0 sites such as Shozu looking to integrate location info.
  • presentation

    1. 1. Mobile Learner Support part of the Virtual Learning Environment Programme Project Leader: Rhodri Thomas [email_address]
    2. 2. Device-independent <ul><li>Working with what students have </li></ul><ul><li>Classes of devices/behaviours </li></ul><ul><li>Providing flexible options </li></ul>
    3. 3. Task 1 – ‘Learning tools’ <ul><li>Discuss in pairs what aids you have to hand that enable you to complete a learning task – be it practical, informal, incidental or more concrete. </li></ul><ul><li>If you have any technology with you, have a real look at what’s available – if you have a phone/device, take a look at the applications on-board. </li></ul>
    4. 4. The classroom in your pocket camera video camera dictionary calculator thesaurus games books calendar art equipment music ‘ tape’ recorder note-pad
    5. 5. Learner-centred
    6. 6. Mobile ‘Channel’: Podcasting VLE iPodcast module
    7. 7. Podcast publicity KMi Podcast Directory  iTunes U
    8. 8. Mobile Content <ul><li>Learning objects </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Formative </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Self-contained </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Reusable </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Multi-format </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Rich text eBooks </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>DAISY Talking Books </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Flash / Java </li></ul></ul>
    9. 9. Mobile Collaboration <ul><li>Social </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Presence </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Status updates </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Instant Messaging </li></ul></ul><ul><li>User-generated </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Rich media capture </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Sharing with peers </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Location-based </li></ul><ul><ul><li>GPS </li></ul></ul>
    10. 10. Mobile blogging ‘moblog’ <ul><li>User-generated </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Rich media & sharing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>http://moblog.co.uk/ | http://www.cellspin.net/ </li></ul></ul><ul><li>MediaBoard examples </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Leeds Met HSC </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>http://www.m-learning.net/preview/LeedsMet_mediaboard / </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ashton Park school </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>IOE – Learning Exchange </li></ul></ul>
    11. 11. Location-based activities <ul><li>Fieldwork & connecting </li></ul><ul><ul><li>groups </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Mapping media to a grid </li></ul><ul><li>Adding GPS data: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Geotagging </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Twitpic </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Shozu </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Google Earth/Maps </li></ul></ul><ul><li>[Science ERA project] </li></ul><ul><li>[FELS Santiago residential] </li></ul>
    12. 12. Task 2 – ‘Learning while mobile’ <ul><li>Discuss in small groups what situations you or your students find yourselves in where access to learning resources might be helpful while on-the-move. </li></ul><ul><li>Would access to certain online services be helpful, if so which? </li></ul>
    13. 13. Interfacing with other learners
    14. 14. Synchronisation & Offline <ul><li>‘ Offline Moodle’ </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Providing local version of course content </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Synchronising forums – allowing personal storage for future reference </li></ul></ul>
    15. 15. Mobile Internet methods <ul><li>Text-only </li></ul><ul><ul><li>No imagery </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Basic styling </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>WAP-browsing (v1) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Cut-down </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Some imagery & styling </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>WAP-browsing (v2)  XHTML </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Resized </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Content processed by server or client applications </li></ul></ul>
    16. 16. Mobile Internet technologies <ul><li>Basic phones </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Small screens used for menus </li></ul></ul><ul><li>‘ VGA’ devices </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Higher resolution for multimedia </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Full screen </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Apple iPhone/iPod touch </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Nokia Internet Tablet </li></ul></ul><ul><li>‘ Zoom view’ </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Apple iPhone/iPod Safari </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Opera Mini/Mobile </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Microsoft Deepfish [in development] </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Google Android [in development] </li></ul></ul>
    17. 17. Research & Development <ul><li>Emulation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Testing/Support </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Staff development </li></ul></ul><ul><li>New user interfaces </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Devices & environments </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Embedding in systems </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Connectivity </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Standalone vs. companion? </li></ul></ul>
    18. 18. Future OU strategy <ul><li>Staff Development </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Hands-on </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Awareness-raising </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Mobile Learning activities </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Face2Face – AL partners </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Residentials </li></ul></ul><ul><li>OU-on-the-go? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Mobile access to services </li></ul></ul>EPD
    19. 19. Follow-up Task – Opera Mini <ul><li>Try out your own </li></ul><ul><li>phone web browser </li></ul><ul><li>first, then compare </li></ul><ul><li>by going to: </li></ul><ul><li>http://mini.opera.com </li></ul><ul><li>Click to download </li></ul><ul><li>There are 3 options </li></ul><ul><li>[  Phone, PC </li></ul><ul><li>or via SMS] ~120kB </li></ul><ul><li>Try out these sites: </li></ul><ul><li>wap.tfl.gov.uk or wap.nationalrail.co.uk </li></ul><ul><li>m.facebook.com or m.flickr.com </li></ul><ul><li>bbc.co.uk /mobile </li></ul><ul><li>library.open.ac.uk </li></ul><ul><li>More on Knowledge Network </li></ul><ul><li>See the difference between </li></ul><ul><li>Opera ‘desktop’ </li></ul><ul><li>and mobile views </li></ul>You can also use the emulator at: http://www.operamini.com/demo/
    20. 20. Mobile Learner Support Project Leader: Rhodri Thomas [email_address] http:// conclave.open.ac.uk/mLearn /

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