It's a mobile world. Students use their mobile devices to communicate, play, document their lives and, yes, even learn. More and more institutions are agreeing they need to adapt the way they teach to better suit their digital-native students, and Lahary Ravuri believes apps are the way to go. In a guest post at EmergingEdTech, she outlined how mobile apps are changing the face of the classroom. We pulled some of our favorite examples, but be sure to read her full post to see everything.
Enhancing the Student Experience
Well-developed apps can provide multi-modal learning pathways – offering students video, audio, demonstrations and examples to help them better understand principles and reach desired learning outcomes. Students receive a lesson in class, then at home review the instructions in-app or practice homework problems with immediate feedback. They can also engage with lessons through games and participate in forums or chats, and start planning for their future by reading about higher education and financial aid incentives.
The ability for students to plan homework and group projects through apps allows teachers the opportunity to monitor the process and interact directly with real-time feedback. They can set up notifications to remind them to study for upcoming tests and help them balance work, school, extracurricular activities and home life. Just like our access to friends and co-workers exists through apps, a student’s access to lessons, tutors, and information now exists.
It’s no secret that some classrooms struggle to meet educational standards and prepare students for our fast-changing world. Edutech apps give students the power to enhance learning, regardless of each individual’s style and preferences. They present alternative modes of learning – such as video explanations, gamification, guided practice, study alerts and more.
Using Analytics to Improve the Classroom
Analytics from edutech apps can track student progress and help educators evaluate methods. The ability to obtain this level of data has never been possible before and the opportunities it presents are significant. For example, the time student spends on a lesson is valuable insight teachers didn’t have previously and digitally tracking final grades on homework and tests paint a more complete picture of what is working for the classroom as a whole and what is working for an individual student.
Additionally, data collected from the student’s use of an app can be used to customize the app interface the student uses so they have consistent access to information in a way that works for them. Consistent usage of an app can help students from kindergarten through graduation as their lessons build upon each other and their app responds with greater levels of personalization.
With ClassDojo, apps can help with classroom management by bringing parents into the education of their children with up-to-the-minute feedback and information pulled from the app’s analytics. Teachers can better plan deadlines for homework assignments based on data about when students are engaged with apps in the evening, and have better understanding of student schedules as they balance the multitude of activities and responsibilities that they juggle.
Apps as a Tool to Personalize Education
There are infinite possibilities when it comes to using mobile apps in education. At the most basic level, parents and students receive up-to-date notifications or homework reminders and instruction. Fully realized, students have access to apps that help them learn the way they respond to best, provide appropriate reminders through push-notifications, track progress and feed data to future teachers so classrooms are more customized and student progress follows them throughout their education. I see a future where middle school classrooms are organized by learning-styles and aptitudes are championed across subjects all because of the potential mobile apps provide.
A mobile app that helps my students realize their potential is one I eagerly enlist. My kids have more access to their teacher and the ability to track their progress and I have more access to them even when they are in school for the day all because of a mobile app. The continuing advancement of mobile apps can spring us into a future that is not only more connected, but more effective.