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Future trends in mobile learning - the wider context and tensions

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UNICEF workshop on Mobile Learning in South Africa, with Department of Basic Education

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Future trends in mobile learning - the wider context and tensions

  1. 1. Future trends in mobile learning John Traxler 16h15 on 7 August 2017
  2. 2. Some Fundamental Truths and Tensions that Drive Future Trends
  3. 3. The transition in the global mobile technology environment from A fragile, institutional, costly, scarce technology, needing theories, experts, institutions and subsidies, working inside ‘education’ to A robust, individual, social, pervasive, cheap, ubiquitous technology , needing no theories (apparently), experts, subsidies and institutions, in which ‘education’ is largely absent
  4. 4. There is a tension between, ‘mobile learning’, an extension of e-learning, delivered and controlled by the established professions and institutions of formal education; teachers teach learners and ‘learning with mobiles’, individuals and cultures able to produce, share, discuss, store, transform ideas, information, identities, communities and opinions; everyone teaches everyone else (cf edtech vs technology for education)
  5. 5. Resources for learning with mobiles (communities, contacts, content) Were Scarce - we had to create them and could control them Now Ubiquitous - everyone creates them; no-one can control them
  6. 6. Institutions and governments promote ‘open’ but People and communities prefer ‘free’
  7. 7. There is a tension between different aspects of learning and mobiles, The global knowledge economy and international banking; mobile digital technologies embodying the language, values and resources of the Anglophone global North; the international imperatives to succeed, scale, transfer, sustain; the mainstream and the established and Minority, marginal and nomadic languages, livelihoods, peoples and cultures; diversity and change; the periphery and subsistence; the subversive and counter-cultural
  8. 8. Technology trends: smarter, faster, cheaper, profitable Social trends: fashion, appropriation, subversion; more complex digital divides Economic trends: ‘hollowing of the labour market” Education trends: BYOD, curation, digital literacy, heutagogy, MOOC, learner analytics … challenging the role of teachers, designers, librarians, the nature of the curriculum
  9. 9. Technological trends are driven by market forces (sometimes by much, much weaker regulatory forces). Educational technology is mostly parasitic previously on corporate digital technology now on social and personal digital technology Except for dedicated educational technology with no economies of scale no real-world credibility
  10. 10. Thanks

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