Liberate your workforce

Twenty-four hour learning

Highlights
  • Students respond enthusiastically to the autonomy provided by mobile learning.
  • Mobile learning provides an opportunity for educators to offer highly personalised classes.
  • The flexibility associated with mobile online learning lets students take advantage of commuting time to engage with the syllabus.
  • Internet access provides educators with an opportunity teach the student online life skills, as well as follow the syllabus.

Australia’s educators are looking beyond the typical school day to create a whole-of-life syllabus for secondary students and take advantage of connected mobile devices.

As a student’s curious mind knows no boundaries, there is a phenomenon on the rise where students embrace learning outside the classroom and access highly personalised coursework. The end goal is to enable students to access relevant learning material on the move when they are in a mobile broadband coverage area: on school excursions, family holidays, camping trips, sporting events or even on the bus on the way home. Ultimately this level of personalisation and access to learning material creates a powerful and deeply engaging learning experience for students of all capabilities and ages.

Twenty-four hour learning

In Queensland for example 65,000 senior high school students have access to netbook-style mobile devices connected to Telstra’s Next G® network that help facilitate learning.

“We discovered a lot of non-formal learning moments happen throughout the day when students have access to the syllabus on a mobile device,” said David O’Hagan chief information officer for the Queensland Department of Education. “Once we gave the devices to the students they went everywhere with them, and to our surprise would keep accessing the syllabus throughout the day and night.”

Safe devices provide a lesson in life

In the case of Queensland each of the devices was fitted with content filtering to prevent students from accessing inappropriate material, and parents were given the ability to grant access to social media sites such as Kik! or Instagram. The experience gave students important lessons about how to behave online, in addition to accessing more formal learning materials.

“We’ve monitored the sorts of sites they access through dynamic filtering along with an acceptable use agreement,” O’Hagan says. “We also have an outreach program where young police officers go out to school to talk about some of the issues that arise from online bullying and inappropriate websites.”

Susi Steigler-Peters, Telstra National General Manager, Education Industry Business Development, says it’s the right approach to give students highly personalised learning experiences.

“What they need is an engaging experience so that they continue to access the resources they need to learn even when they are not in the classroom,” says Ms Steigler-Peters.

Student engagement soars

While some state education departments have built their mobile education approach around a specific device, South Australia has taken a device agnostic approach which with some surprising results. Not only were students connecting to the syllabus in their own time, they were also connecting with a range of devices.

According to Peter Simmonds, Assistant Director for ICT Strategy and Relationships for the Department for Education and Child Development in South Australia, students are more highly engaged with educational resources they access through mobile devices.

“Learning occurs in any number of ways and locations, and it doesn’t stop when the bell goes, and having access to further or complementary learning opportunities online means that kids can access that learning at the time they are most receptive to it,” Simmonds says. “Unlike traditional classes online learning opportunities caters to the student as and when they wish, day or night.”

Watch the video to find out how mobile learning can help your students become more highly engaged, or speak with your Telstra Account Executive.

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