So my full-time occupation is a Graphic Design Manager for an academic publisher who also runs revision and summer courses for students who are studying, or about to study the International Baccalaureate. A part of my role with the company is to take stock photographs on-course to use in marketing collateral for the company. As such I get a unique insight into the behaviour of students towards their learning.
On the most recent course programme I entered many classrooms and interacted with the students. All aged between 15-18, the students are a perfect sample of the next generation of further and higher education students.
It was interesting to note that a large percentage of the students used iPads or laptops to carry out their studies. Indeed I walked into one classroom and every single student in a class of about 15-20 were working on a laptop! It is interesting to note that a large number of students had tablets but chose to use a laptop instead for the course. I wonder if the progression to learning via tablets is still a slow transition – perhaps software developed for tablets does not yet offer the flexibility of that designed for laptops and desktops. There is a mixed consensus on this, but in general, there is a trend towards developing site versions specific to mobile devices, which tend to limit functionality compared to that offered on the desktop site version. Something to research further going forwards.
It would be very interesting also to design a short e-learning course that complemented the in-classroom programme and was in synch with the teaching on offer. I may look undertaking this as a practical project going forward. There might be scope for me to actually test the programme on-course and measure results. I will investigate this further and re-post on my progress.