The practitioner's perspective

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Two students sitting at a desk using a PDA.
"With personalised learning and a wider clientele planned for both further and higher education, I think that we should at least explore the use of PDAs for our learners."
Janet Pittaway, Assistant Principal, Dewsbury College
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Empowering learners


The smallness of a mobile device can place learning activities quite literally in the learners' hands. The spontaneity that use of a pocket-sized device can offer means that learning can be unobtrusive and convenient. This can be a powerful motivator for disaffected or less experienced learners. Other benefits include:

Motivation. Bite-sized resources delivered via a small screen can encourage participation in learning.
Control. Opportunities are available to revisit content, add to e-portfolios or test knowledge in learners' own time and chosen location.
Portability. Can be used in a range of contexts, including work-based, community and family learning.
Recording achievement. Learners' achievements can be recorded via audio, video or stills images, by learners themselves.

An example

A case study, Mobile learning and teaching with PDAsfrom Dewsbury College, Thomas Danby College and Bishop Burton College, shows how e-learning resources can be taken into outreach venues and work-based learning environments on mobile devices to motivate and empower learners, and provide evidence of their achievements. This case study is also available on video.