Going with the grain: Mobile devices in practiceJohn Pettit, Agnes Kukulska-Hulme
Institute of Educational Technology
The Open University
Fifty-seven alumni of a global Masters programme participated in research into their use of mobile devices. Drawing on questionnaire and interview data, the paper examines how far the devices were embedded in the personal and professional lives of these alumni, most of whom were aged 35–54. All had experience of online and distance education, and most worked in education or training. The study revealed some innovative uses of mobile devices, a selection of which is reported in this paper. The paper links the findings to wider debates about the changing relationship between learners and educational institutions, and the role of mobile devices in enabling individuals to engage in learning conversations. Data are provided on which devices were used by the alumni and for what purposes, and the paper explores the implications of these findings for educators.
Keywords: mobile devices, context, informal learning, moblogs, social networking websites