Sending iPads into War Zones: Would we do it again?


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This paper was presented at the Digital Education Conference 2014 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. It concerns the work of University of Leicester's Department of Criminology, which ships iPads to its masters students so that they can have multimedia learning materials even when there is no internet conncetion.

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  • Giddens – late modernity, Castells – networked society, Engestrom - - activity theory
    Affordance refers to the perceived and actual properties of a thing, primarily those functional properties that determine just how the thing could possibly be used. Salomon, 1993 p51
  • Sending iPads into War Zones: Would we do it again?

    1. 1. Sending iPads into War Zones: Would we do it again? Terese Bird Learning Technologist & SCORE Research Fellow Institute of Learning Innovation Digital Education Conference 27-28 May 2014 Kuala Lumpur Photo by The USO on Flickr
    2. 2. What will we talk about? • Overview of mobile learning • Why iPads into War Zones? • Problems... solutions • Would we do it again? • What are we doing now? Photo by Aaron Hockley on Flickr
    3. 3. Why mobile learning? • “…we have to recognise that mobile, personal, and wireless devices are now radically transforming societal notions of discourse and knowledge, and are responsible for new forms of art, employment, language, commerce, deprivation, and crime, as well as learning.” (Traxler, 2009) • “Learner freely moving in his physical (and virtual) environment” (Laouris and Eteokleous, 2005)
    4. 4. Mobile devices: For consumers, for education PDA 1998 Mobile phone 2000 Mp3 player 2001 Netbook 2007 E-reader 2010 Tablet 2011 Consumer mobile devices and the year they ‘caught on’ in public use: Key dates for mobile learning: • 2004 – Duke University issues iPods to all incoming freshmen – recorded lectures are the main use • 2007 – iTunes U is launched • 2010 – Cedars School of Excellence, Scotland, becomes world’s 1st one iPad-per-student school
    5. 5. Overview Main tangible benefits of mobile learning (JISC, 2011) 1. Personal, private, and familiar 2. Pervasive and ubiquitous 3. Portable – enabling learning anywhere, anytime 4. Immediate capture of data and learning processes – camera, video, sound, text input 5. Promotes active learning Terese explains DUCKLING e-readers Photo by Newandalice on Flickr
    6. 6. Why iPads in War Zones? • Wanted a way to give rich multimedia and collabor- ative learning experience • Device required for when students are travelling, working in areas without internet access • In 2011: iPad? Kindle? Phone?
    7. 7. iPad in War Zones: Problems • How to make an app? • How to guarantee access to app? • What if iPad breaks or is stolen? • Is the students’ data safe? • How to pay for iPad? Photo by Oxfam International on Flickr
    8. 8. iPad in War Zones: Solutions • How to make an app? Apple store recommended programmer • How to guarantee access to app? Download via computer • What if iPad breaks or is stolen? Apple customer service • Is the students’ data safe? No marks stored in the cloud • How to pay for iPad? Increase tuition fee Photo by Oxfam International on Flickr
    9. 9. Student survey (Blackboard, Response Rate 40%)
    10. 10. For how long do you use the Course App each time? Blue: More than 60 minutes Red: 30-60 minutes
    11. 11. Given these three choices of having the course material in print, course app, and Blackboard, please rank your preferences. Blue: Course App, Blackboard Site, Print Red: Print, Course App, Blackboard 55% 45%
    12. 12. Paper: it’s complicated
    13. 13. Study on the move and offline 100% used iPad in various locations • Home • Workplace • Public places (airport, café) • On the move (train, bus, plane) “Often my internet is of a poor standard so the app makes it easier to study without having to wait for the page to load.”
    14. 14. Time management • “It has enabled me to read the material without carrying a bundle of books and is very good for studying at work during the free time.” • “Having access to the information wherever I go has allowed for better time management particularly as a distance learning student and under full time employment.” • “I have thus far enjoyed the experience using the iPad and Course App, it is a dynamic learning tool, which has done an excellent job in filling the gap for the working student who is unable to be on campus, by making the material available everywhere you go.”
    15. 15. Motivation and Engagement • “Firstly I am more motivated, as it is structured and organised. I am getting through more than I would if I was solely given a recommended reading list.” • “The Course App is easily accessed, it is pre-structured and organised. I find it a logical progression and a great guide to complete a unit by using the course app.” • “It is more interactive than other conventional means of studying. You can use audio visual options, plus get to online links which can help maintaining focus while studying. Plus this is like mobile education as you don’t need to go a physical space, e.g. study room or library to study.”
    16. 16. Skills development (Digital literacy) “I have found the course material, the iPad and [the] Blackboard all very useful. It is forcing me to maintain pace with technology, a point I needed to with having two boys both studying at the 6th form and university respectively. I am really enjoying using and blending all the teaching methods available.” Student Kindle app PDF Readers Twitter Pages Ever- note iTunes U Skype iBrain- storm Drop- box Blackboard Mobile Learn
    17. 17. War Zones: iPads - negatives • Customs charges upon shipment to student - paid • E-books on Amazon somewhat problematic – some countries cannot get Amazon – send books • One or two countries (i.e. Sudan) could not get Apple store online – send books • Flash on iPad requires special browser (Puffin)
    18. 18.
    19. 19. Would we do it again? We are doing it again, plus more courses
    20. 20. University of Leicester School of Medicine: iPads for all undergraduate students Apple Education website (Apple, 2011)
    21. 21. University of Leicester School of Education – MA International Education • iPads to distance students • Instructor creates ibook • Apple iBooks Author • Text with embedded video and audio
    22. 22. School of Education Kindles – Educational Leadership MA • Planning stages • Distance learning • Students want offline reading of core texts • Publishers, Amazon have rigid rules
    23. 23. University of Leicester School of Management • Very large distance learning programme • Paper got too expensive • BYOD • InDesign – save as pdf, epub, mobi (Kindle)
    24. 24. Study by mobile – remote regions • 7Cs learning design • Consultancy to help create epub learning materials • Facebook group & Dropbox as LMS • Smartphones still too expensive (epub)
    25. 25. Study by mobile – remote regions •
    26. 26. References and Thanks • Apple. (2011). Apple (United Kingdom) - Education - Profiles - Leeds School of Medicine changes learning culture with work-based iPhones. Apple Education Case studies. Retrieved January 6, 2013, from • JISC. (2011). Mobile Learning infokit / Home. Retrieved August 22, 2012, from • Joly, K. (2005). Duke University iPod first-year experience: So, was it worth it? | College Web Editor website. Retrieved August 19, 2011, from experience-so-was-it-worth-it/ • Laouris, Y. and N. Eteokleous (2005). We need an educationally relevant definition of mobile learning. mLearning, South Africa. • McFayden, S. (2010). Scottish school becomes first in world where all lessons take place using computers - The Daily Record. Daily Record. Retrieved January 5, 2012, from becomes-first-in-world-where-all-lessons-take-place-using-computers-86908-22525988/ • Nie, M., Armellini, A., Witthaus, G., & Barkland, K. (2010). Delivering University Curricula: Knowledge, Learning and INnovation Gains — University of Leicester. Leicester. Retrieved from alliance/projects/duckling • Payne, K. F., Wharrad, H., & Watts, K. (2012). Smartphone and medical related App use among medical students and junior doctors in the United Kingdom (UK): a regional survey. BMC medical informatics and decision making, 12(1), 121. doi:10.1186/1472-6947-12-121 • The Paypers. Insights in payments. (2012). Retrieved January 3, 2013, from payments/smartphone-adoption-in-uk-reaches-51-students-lead-the-way/747745-16 • Traxler, J. (2009). Current State of Mobile Learning. (M. Ally, Ed.)Mobile Learning Transforming the Delivery of Education and Training, 5(2), 9–24. Retrieved from • Wiley, C. (2012). Twitter in the University Classroom: Live-Tweeting During Lectures | Educational Vignettes on Educational Vignettes. Retrieved January 10, 2013, from university-classroom-live-tweeting-during-lectures/
    27. 27. Email me with questions -