Thursday, December 8, 2011

Module 6: Instructional Strategies and Accessibility Features for Mobile Learning

In this sixth module, I researched and compared mobile applications that integrate resources for various curriculum and target audiences. I analyzed how to repurpose or complement instructional content and learning activities of various media types via mobile instruction and extend learning opportunities beyond traditional barriers. We applied research-based understanding of learner differences:  culture/race, ability/disability, gender, age, socioeconomic status in delivery of mobile learning instruction for blended learning and self-learning. We also evaluated accessibility features of mobile resources.


Instructional Strategies & Research
Producing mLearning Content
  • Quick and Simple mLearning Content for the iPhone
    Provides a basic vehicle for creating simple mLearning content, so that you can get started quickly, see what’s possible, understand the pitfalls, and begin to figure out how you might blend mLearning into your existing training or learning strategy. 
Accessibility of Mobile Learning
Mobile Blogging

How to post to your blog from your mobile phone.!

“Google Mobile App for iPhone”
Makes searching the web and your contacts faster and easier with features like Google Suggest, My Location, and search history.


For the first activity in this module, we were assigned to select a mobile application that could be incorporated into our educational/training environment, then evaluate that application using the Evaluation Rubric for iPod Apps.  We also answered the question, "How could this application support differentiating instruction to meet every learner's needs?  The app that I reviewed was ScreenChomp on the iPad. ScreenChomp is a recordable whiteboard.  It allows you to jot your ideas down and share them. It was designed for teachers and students. ScreenChomp records your touchscreen interactions and audio.
Users can write and draw with their finger, draw using twelve different pen colors, and all activity can be easily recorded.  For more advanced users, the recordings can be edited in Camtasia for Mac or Camtasia Studio. The videos produced in ScreenChomp can be downloaded as MP4 files, making them easy to share on, Facebook, YouTube, iTunes, Moodle, Blackboard and other video hosting platforms. As the following video states, “ScreenChomp bridges the gap between the problem and getting help.”  Teachers can send tutoring videos home with students.  Students can create videos to present their work or to help another classmate.
I’d like to demonstrate ScreenChomp for faculty at my University.  It is easy to use, free, and they can encourage their students to use it also. ScreenChomp can be used in a very basic way, such as a simple recording of a drawing.  Intermediate use would include adding audio to the video, and more advanced use would include inserting a background image, rotating the image, and including audio and video.  Users may find it easiest to share the video via email, and others may embed the videos in a Moodle course site or on their blog.

Activity 2 required us to research the topic of a training topic or lesson plan using our mobile devices using Google Mobile.  Then, record audible notes with Google Voice for Mobile.  Then, save the URL to a bookmarking site such as or diigo. Then, post a reflection on the class discussion board describing our experience in conducting research using our mobile devices. 
I used the new Google Voice Search for Android.  My Samsung Epic 4G Galaxy S phone just updated that morning to a newer version of the Android OS.  So, I tried the new voice search that is built-in now.  It is amazing how well the app recognizes my voice! I opened the app and said, "using Twitter in the classroom" and instantly received a list of some recent and relevant links.  I had also downloaded DiigoDroid for Android and all I had to do was hold my finger on the URL and click "Share" and choose Diigo in the list of choices.  I added a brief description and tagged it with "mobile learning."   I agree with others about how difficult it is to read web articles using a small android screen, but on the other hand, it was very easy to "share" the URL to Diigo.  Then, at a later time, when I am sitting at my desktop or laptap, I can read the articles in more detail. While I was in the Diigo screen to bookmark the URLs, I used the voice feature in the description field to add information and tips to myself about the resource being bookmarked.  VERY NICE!  This saved a bunch of typing.

For Activity 3, we all participated by posting to the UW-Stout Mobile Learning Blog
using the BlogPress App from the iTunes Store for iPad or iPhone.  

Activity 4 focused on revamping a face-to-face lesson or online activity for mobile learning. I wrote an action plan describing how the use of mobile learning will strengthen the training activity and help meet the goals and objectives. I described how I would adapt the format of the activity to meet accessibility standards for mobile learning. I lead a 90-minute technology hands-on workshop on screencasting.  The title of this workshop is “YouToo” Can Do Video. In the workshop, participants use Camtasia Studio or Camtasia for Mac to narrate a PowerPoint about the life cycle of a frog. They use a prepared PowerPoint and read from a prepared script.  When the screencast is finished, they upload the MP4 file to the University’s media server and they also learn how to publish to YouTube and, and add a link to the video in Moodle.
I would like to offer an alternative mobile technology project to participants. iPads are gaining in popularity on my campus. Participants will gain hands-on experience using the iPad to create a screencast. They will be able to compare and contrast to the standard (Camtasia/PowerPoint on Mac and PC) projects going on in the workshop. This will allow them to discover the power and capabilities of mobile devices.
For the Mobile Technology Project:  Participants use iPads and the Explain Everything app. The iPads are preloaded with the PowerPoint frog lifecycle slides (which have been imported to Explain Everything). The participants record narration, reading from a prepared script. They then upload the MP4 to YouTube or email the file, and then use the PC or Mac to upload to the University’s media server. Participants also learn how to add a link to the video in Moodle. In both methods described (standard and mobile), workshop participants learn to include the script of the video either as a text file for the University’s media server for linking in Moodle,  or text or formatted closed captions file for YouTube.

Instructions for closed captioning in YouTube can be found here:
Note:  In YouTube, videos with captions display the small “cc” logo at the bottom of the player.

In Activity 5, we applied QR Codes to our educational environments. I used an Adroid QR reader (Barcode Scanner) and scanned the QR Code provided in the course activity.  I created my own QR Code using the ZXing Project.  My code included my contact information and a link to my Instructional Technology Blog. Here it is:

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