What Is the Impact of mLearning on Training?
mLearning is undeniably changing the landscape of current and future education; a determined force driving forward despite leaving many designers in its wake. Adapting your design to reflect the technological and cultural growth of education is a necessity in an industry that does and SHOULD evolve rapidly to reflect the changing times.
The first step to create great mLearning is to fully comprehend its impact on training. Let’s take a brief look at mLearning’s influence on 3 broad stages that cover the lifespan of any training initiative: development, delivery and learner consumption.
Development – How mLearning influences education design:
An mLearning module that tries to function like an eLearning module will undoubtedly result in a poor learning experience. Mobile learning requires an elegant and simple design to operate and account for proportionate selectable areas and easy to navigate interfaces. Learning modules should be succinct and easy to resume as mobile devices are used frequently throughout the day, but for brief periods. mLearning design should also consider size of touch targets; placement of navigation controls (so they align with how we hold mobile devices); touch gestures; simplicity; and the amount of content per screen. An effective mLearning course maximizes efficiency with smaller segments of information for the learner to consume at their own pace and leisure. The content is presented in a concise manner on an interface that loads quickly and is easily navigated with a mobile device.
Delivery – How mLearning changes the way education is distributed:
With an incredible variation among mobile devices, from size to operating system, an understanding of mobile education in terms of its technologies and hardware is essential for development purposes. Many learning departments have focused on tablets as a sort of middle ground for formal instruction in a structured travel setting, while smartphones act as medium to encourage best practice in informal learning in a truly mobile environment. In addition, mobile devices are packed with features and hardware allowing an mLearning product to be highly effective in a contextual setting. It enables quick communication with others, the ability to upload information, use of geo-location for place-specific guidance, as well as creating and sharing content including photos, audio, video, calling and text.
Consumption – How mLearning impacts the context of education:
Perhaps mLearning’s most significant contribution is to the learners themselves. Accessing training on a mobile device allows learners to participate without the restrictions of time and space or the requirement of having to sit in front of a computer for a specified amount of material. mLearning has the potential to dramatically influence when and where people are learning; it is meant to facilitate learning on the go, maximizing flexibility and accessibility. Mobile learners can engage in education virtually anywhere at anytime, and as such, open the door to a learning environment where interactivity thrives and learning challenges can occur while on location and in context.