Going to school no longer means just picking up a bag full of books and riding a bus to the school building. Mobile technology has changed all of that. Thanks to mobile applications, online schooling is now possible. Mobile apps have changed teaching both outside and inside the classroom.
Studies have shown that the use of mobile devices can significantly affect the achievement levels of students. For example, Maya Lopuch, a researcher from Harvard, conducted a study in 2013 on iPad usage in classrooms. She showed that it helped Harvard students improve their scores by nine percentile points, on an average, in three months. The average student in her sample was able to achieve 65% academic growth over expected levels. For younger students too, there is growing evidence that mobile technology can lead to considerable gain in learning outcomes.
Benefits of Learning Apps
Children find it easier to understand things through mobile apps. They often find learning through apps, which may include animation and video, more interesting as against books.
The major benefits include:
- Greater interactiveness: Since children interact directly with different elements in mobile apps, they learn better. When lessons are turned into games, they take a greater interest in the concepts they need to know about. It is a clear improvement for them over lectures and homework.
- Continuous connectivity and utilisation of leisure hours: Children do not have to worry about schedules when they study through mobile apps. As the learning is not time-bound, they can learn at a relaxed pace.
They can actively spend their free time learning through apps, rather than idly browsing the internet or watching television shows.
- Learning systematically: Children can learn systematically through apps as they are taken through concepts in an intended sequence. The apps can be so engrossing that the learners move with the flow for the intended learning path, sometimes without even realising that.
- Tracking progress: Teachers and parents, along with the children themselves, can track the progress of learning through the apps. They can track the performance metrics to see how the apps help to improve the skills of the learners.
- More retention and higher completion rates: Mobile apps present content in concise and bite-sized chunks. This flexibility allows children to retain their learning for a longer time and motivates them to complete courses.
- Benefiting from new learning trends: Gamification, social learning and micro-learning are among the new trends that learning apps allow students to benefit from. Developers can easily adapt their mobile apps to such trends, as against more formal modes of learning.
Learning apps in India
A number of leading educational technology companies, including Next Education, have successfully launched learning apps in India. For instance, the LearnNext app offers fun, effective and complete learning experiences, including HD animated videos, tests and exercises. Similarly, the NextGurukul app provides study material, articles, Q&A forum and expert advice, and is a virtual encyclopaedia on K-12 education.