Monday, May 14, 2012

Mobile Assessment

A lot of practioners would probably agree with my assumption that Mobile learning is finally coming of age with the rapid rise in numbers of the handheld devices and the massive data packages along with their ever decreasing prices that is making them ever more affordable for learners and also learning providers as tools to give to their learners. Now an increasing number of learners are accesing their course and other learning materials through their handheld devices. With the advent of HTML5 and mobile apps for reading, more and more content is being made available to view accessibly on these devices. While using these mobile devices as tools to push passive content either in shape of course material or information has increased, we have still not managed to use the ever increasing sets of features available in these devices to engage more interactively with our learners. Use of mobile assessment for example is minimistic to say the least by even the expert learning technologists.

Things are changing slightly with specialised new apps for assessment like Socrative and also with the apps in market for VLE's like Moodle & Blackboard and E-Portfolio's like Mahara. Below is my intake on these apps.



Socrative is a free smart student response system that empowers teachers to engage their classrooms through a series of educational exercises and games via smartphones, laptops, and tablets. The app is freely available on most mobile operating systems like Android.iOS & Blackberry and allows tutors to build assessments that can be completed through handheld devices or PCs.The results of assessment are also stored and the lecturer can download the results in excel sheet format. The tutor can run each assessment any number of times and each instance records it's results separately. It allows feature of randomising the options to learners.



Moodle and Blackboard App 

As VLEs are already a dominant source for educational content, it makes logical sense to have a mobile interface for an organisation's learning platform. Moodle and Blackboard VLE have both now got specialised apps for their solution. These apps not only make the educational content already available on these platforms accessible for the handheld devices but with utilises features like camera, audio & video recorderto allow students to submit evidence for their assessment directly through smart devices. Students can also upload pre-existing content from their mobile devices.

 Mahara Droid app