Handheld Learning

Session description

Michael Carrier

Session details:

*Please accept our apologies - the audio for this video starts at 02:30* We all use the Internet for Online teaching and learning but have forgotten to look at other digital technologies for teachers and learners who do not have reliable internet access. This talk discusses what we can do with handheld & mobile phone technology - and our work in enhancing the learning of the disadvantaged communities in developing economies. We believe people can learn best through personal interaction – and technology is really a second best. But sometimes it is the only way to bring new ideas, materials, and learning resources to people – and this is especially true in developing and some emerging economies. Technology is assumed to mean 'by Internet' – but only small proportion of teachers and learners have internet access in Africa, India, Mexico and other large countries. Only have 10-20% may have internet access – but close to 60-80% have access to mobile phones. This must be therefore the new way we look to provide English language support to teachers and learners. We have been working with rural communities in India and Africa to develop new approaches to the delivery of rich and motivating learning materials – through handheld devices like mobile phones and tablets, as well as via radio and TV broadcasts. We have used iphone and Android apps to deliver language games and vocab practice We are using old-fashioned ‘text only‘ phones in Africa and developing economies to deliver language practice to disadvantaged communities, and using the same technology to deliver teacher training materials over the phone network These are still experiments in the new field of Handheld Learning, but they hold great promise for providing better support for teachers and learners who do not have the advantages that we take for granted.