Practitioners as Innovators: Emergent Practice in Personal Mobile Teaching, Learning, Work and Leisure
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Mobile devices have become commonplace tools serving a wide array of purposes that may include teaching and learning alongside work and leisure, in both formal and informal settings. The project reported on in this paper was an investigation of how personal mobile devices are used by 57 students and alumni from the global Masters Programme in Online and Distance Education offered by the Institute of Educational Technology at the Open University, UK. The focus was on the types of activity undertaken, innovative or unexpected uses of mobile devices, and any issues mentioned by participants. Data was collected in 2005 by means of an online questionnaire and follow-up interviews with a subset of respondents. The questionnaire contained both quantitative and qualitative questions relating to the use of four types of device, user communities and groups, the frequency of specific uses, and users’ views on the attractions and disadvantages of mobile learning. The research is intended to help inform those who are interested in the potential of mobile learning, who are designing learning with a specific type of mobile device in mind, or who own a mobile device but may not be making the most of it for their own teaching and learning.