The impact of mobile wireless technology in higher education classrooms
Rungchat Chompu-inwai, Oregon State University, United States
Oregon State University . Awarded
This research employed both quantitative and qualitative research methodologies to explore the impact of mobile wireless technology (MWT) in higher education classrooms. The methodology was developed using systems engineering concepts. A methodology to evaluate and compare the cost, cost-effectiveness and cost-utility of different MWT configurations was also developed. Five outcomes were used to assess impact: student attitudes, student learning outcomes, teaching and learning processes, contribution of MWT to meeting learning objectives, and effects of previous experiences with mobile technology.
In classrooms where MWT was used in lectures on a regular basis, particularly for programming applications, the robustness of the supporting infrastructure (e.g. wireless network) appeared to play an important role in positively or negatively influencing student attitudes such as liking, enthusiasm and student views of the general usefulness of MWT. The device type appeared to play an important role in changing student attitudes. In classrooms where MWT devices were used for special applications, MWT costs as well as assigning grades were found to influence student attitudes.
The frequent and individual use of MWT with wireless capability inside and outside classroom was positively related to student learning outcomes as measured by student homework grades, as well as course learning objective achievement and student overall learning. The use of MWT in the classroom positively impacted student learning abilities.
Teaching and learning processes, interactions between the instructor and students, and interactions between students were impacted by the use of MWT. Previous experience did not always impact student attitudes. Significant differences were found only in some attitude scales in some courses.
The results of this study highlight the value of using multiple outcomes to assess impact. Based on these results, the advantages of MWT were found to outweigh the disadvantages. The findings of this study provided a unique and comprehensive evaluation of the contribution of MWT in the higher education classroom. The methodology was designed so that other educational institutions may use it to evaluate MWT implementations in their own unique settings.
Chompu-inwai, R. The impact of mobile wireless technology in higher education classrooms. Ph.D. thesis, Oregon State University.
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