Keep taking the tablets? Assessing the use of tablet devices in learning and teaching activities in the Further Education sector
This article summarises the methodology and outcomes of an interventionist/action research project to assess the benefits, and potential pitfalls, of the use of mobile devices in learning and teaching activities in a Further Education environment. A bank of 15 tablet devices were purchased and prepared for classroom use. Staff members were approached to scope potential activities and uses for the tablet devices. Three departments took part in the research activity: the Language School, Social and Vocational Studies and the Hairdressing department. Use of the tablets was varied in nature and included: use of multimedia tools, use of apps, creation and use of a bespoke app, multimedia manipulation and sharing, and creation of an online e-portfolio. Staff and student feedback was gathered during and after the project, and project authors were present during classroom activities for observation and recording purposes. Overall feedback was very positive, but there were issues with tablet use and administration. One of the major issues was the onerous nature of the security setup, and app administration.
Keywords: mobile technology; tablets; student attitudes; staff attitudes; mobile classroom
(Published: 19 February 2014)
Citation: Research in Learning Technology 2014, 22: 22648 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/rlt.v22.22648