In reading the four chapters from “Mobile Learning” edited by Mohammed Ally, I was struck with a concept that, while I’m sure is not totally original, is new to me: the idea of m-learning as a bridge.
In the varied applications of m-learning that were shared, one could see in each how m-learning was serving as a bridge, linking two disparate parts:
-in the both the nursing education and teacher education examples, the PDA’s used served as a bridge between the university as a center of instruction and the local community as a center of both instruction and practice.
-in the example of the students in the distance learning program, the use of mobile devices served not just as a bridge between two physically different places, but it served as a bridge between aspects of their lives: work, play, and leisure. In other words, mobiles allowed them to access entertainment (play) while they were waiting for a train (life) or for a meeting to start (work); they could check emails (work) while out with friends (play). In this context, one can see connections to Mark Deuze’s “MediaWork”, which describes how changes in our lifestyles, fueled by- among other things- ICT’s, is blurring the lines dividing the three aspects of our life described above.
-in the museum tour example, mobiles served as a bridge between the object and related information displayed in the museum and the wealth of information that exists about that object elsewhere (although, the lack of WiFi somewhat diminishes that claim).