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ITx 2016 Conference Programme

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Beyond Wi-Fi: Using mobile devices for gxLearning in the field

Monday 12:10pm - 12:40pm, CITRENZ (CITRENZ 2 Room)

Over the past two years, the use of mobile devices to implement and support field trips for both face-to-face and remote students has been explored at the [institute]. As part of a wider study in using web technologies to enable geographically extended learning (gxLearning), the use of mobile to extend learning beyond the classroom has offered all students an authentic learning experience in the context of their studies. This paper reports on an activity where mobile devices utilizing 3G/4G data services were used by students attending to visually record their experience and to include remote students in a field based activity. The research uses two cycles of an experiential learning model combined with a case study methodology to answer the research question, “What are the challenges of using a mobile technology supported gxLearning environment in the field?”. The findings from this research show that while mobile devices do offer remote students a means of participation and engagement, the experience is dependent of careful planning and the variables of network connectivity and device quality. While the use of mobile data networks exacerbated overall performance students did find that being able to communicate with their peers gave them a sense of unity over a shared real time experience.

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Stephanie Day



Michael Verhaart