Apps for Teaching and Learning


As a group of health and sport academics and subject librarians we have been exploring how teachers evaluate, keep up-to-date and successfully incorporate app technology into their practice (or not). 

The project has involved an innovative interactive process using dialogue sheets to stimulate teachers in discussion and reflection on the use of ‘apps’. It also enabled capture of individual comments, questions and ideas for wider dissemination. You might have attended our workshop at the Teaching and Learning conference (Middlesex University, July 2015). We also explored the same issues at a UK university science librarians’ conference (USTLG, Imperial College, November 2015).  The sorts of issues we have been exploring are the extent to which teachers use mobile devices in teaching; reflection on what works and why; perceived promoters and barriers to using mobile devices in different disciplines; and how librarians can support mobile users’ information needs (or who else should be involved).  


Results indicate that whilst subject discipline and teaching roles varied across groups, similar core issues arose. These included concerns over being able to evaluate and keep up-to-date with mobile technology; perceptions of need for interagency support; and, commonly, concern that using mobile devices ought to be underpinned by a sound pedagogy. Concerns specific to mobile devices in particular, or to education resources and technology more generally, were also highlighted.  


One very practical outcome for Middlesex Staff is the Library subject guide ‘Apps for Teaching and Learning’ http://libguides.mdx.ac.uk/app. This includes free general interest and subject-specific apps, including suggestions from workshop participants. It is intended to be a collaborative resource so if you have any apps you’d like to recommend please let us know. (273 words)
 

Some Useful References
Chen, B. and Denoyelles, A. (2013) ‘Exploring students' mobile learning practices in higher education’, Educause Review. Available from http://www.educause.edu/ero/article/exploring-students-mobile-learning-practices-higher-education (Accessed 5th January 2016)
Cherner, T., Dix, J. and Lee, C. (2014) ‘Cleaning up that mess: A framework for classifying educational apps’, Contemporary Issues in Technology and Teacher Education, 14(2), pp. 158-193.
Khaddage, F. and Hernández Cosío, J. (2014) March. Trends and Barriers on the Fusion of Mobile Apps in Higher Education Where to Next and How?. In Society for Information Technology & Teacher Education International Conference (Vol. 2014, No. 1, pp. 903-909).
Khaddage, F., Lattemann, C. and Bray, E. (2011) ‘Mobile Apps Integration for Teaching and Learning. (Are Teachers Ready to Re-blend?)’, Society for Information Technology & Teacher Education International Conference. Nashville, Tennessee, 7-11 March. Chesapeake, Virginia: AACE, pp. 2545-2552.


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