Mobile learning in Kuwait: A blessing or challenge
- Jun 29, 2018
Mobile devices and the 21st K Generation:- A never-ending bond that is going stronger than before. Even, the developed countries are getting the share of the taste of mobile technologies. Financial organizations, education, entertainments, tourism, army, medicine, etc. are experiencing rapid social changes due to the integration of the mobile devices.
Mobile learning has rendered both opportunities and challenges equally. The people involved in the educational industry is continually striving to find out the way to construct environments that can be the backbone of various learning settings and actions and the procedure towards the acceptation in the multitudinal traditions and cultures.
Again, Mobile learning or m-learning is leading towards altering the existing learning schemes for providing the students some useful approach to have command over the learning experiences. Several educators and researchers are presently probing the full potential of the mobile devices taking the learning process into account.
M-learning is taking the place of traditional learning through the use of mobile devices. It is a type of learning that allows the apprentices to obtain the learning stuffs anywhere and anytime via mobile gadgets.
M-learning is an extension of the e-learning that is online learning which is carried out both inside and outside the classroom.
In the Arab country, there is an omnipresence of mobile devices. The market in Kuwait has experienced mobile penetration over 200% in the year 2015. The availability of the mobile phones and its infrastructure in Kuwait is directing towards the progressive shift of mobile learning. The Ministry of Education in Kuwait (MOE) has distributed around 80,500 one-to-one mobile tablets among the pupils and the educators in the academic year of 2015-2016 for activating the mobile learning medium a crucial part of the national e-learning project in Kuwait. It is rooted entirely in Kuwait e-learning strategies developed in the year 2008.
The impact of mobile learning is spread on both teaching and learning. The researchers have got the urge to examine the influence of the m-learning in the matter of supporting learning and teaching.
We have accumulated specific characteristics of mobile learning:
The students can use the mobile medium of education at any moment and from any corner. They can transform the traditional classroom into ‘anytime-anywhere’ education. The instructors can mix the traditional and m learning.
M-learning maximizes the online and face-to-face interaction between the teacher and student, student and student, teacher and teacher, groups of teacher and students. The interactive learning environment gives shape to the collaborative learning activities and permits immediate access to the learning materials and educational directives.
The mobile platforms let the students amalgamate with the classmates, search locations and inquire information.
MSMA or Mobile Social Media Applications are developed through the mobile computing. The social media applications provide chances to boost the students’ engagement, collaboration, and interactivity. The learners can share the lecture notes via social media sites. It has been observed that the teachers’ lectures, study resources, comments, point of views, rich experiences, etc. are discussed and shared through the use of social media program.
Constructive relationships are build which further influences the learning quality. Plus, students who are working to earn money and don’t get the chance to study in the traditional classroom on a daily basis can learn the full course via mobile medium.
On Kuwait’s ground, there is a survey done on the application of mobile learning in the College of Basic Education in Kuwait. When asked to the students, we got to know that around 80.3% of them were pleased to use mobile devices as they have managed to gain considerable knowledge of English language. Again, a study has been conducted for the investigation of the impact of the mobile learning adoption by the Saudi women teachers. The result showed that there was an increase in teachers’ collaboration with the students.
However, certain drawbacks can be pointed out:
Students can fall under the negative influence due to the increasing exposure of the mobile devices. They can get access to some unethical sites that are not meant for underage people or students. Again, hackers can trap them by hacking their accounts and loot them or involve them in illegal activities.
Besides, the students may not feel the exact pressure of the learning course and take the studies seriously. They may unnecessarily delay the completion of the specific courses.
A specific portion of the chapters may not get clear to the students which they can have done if admitted to a traditional classroom. The mismatch of the study time and lack of live face-to-face discussion with the educators can still keep the confusion about the chapters intact.
Again, the students and the teachers may live in different states and met through online medium only. Chances are there that the young students’ feel to get immensely involved in the study may be less.
The confidential study materials of one institution can be leaked to other organizations and individuals which is not legal.
Technical issues may arise due to the small screen size, less memory, limited battery life, screen brightness and network reliability.
Furthermore, improper infrastructure, lack of technical knowledge of the instructors, stakeholders and the students, application developmental challenges, lack of technical support, insufficient training on the technical application, un-timely updations of the educational instructions and notes, etc. can also affect the m-learning process.
Overall, the consequences direct towards the students’ retention of knowledge and augment their learning process.
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