Intellectual Output 3.2 : GUIDELINE: Tips and tricks for effective use of mobile devices in education

The emergence and development of the Internet in recent decades has led to a radical shift in our perceptions of education. From a closed, conservative system, it has become an open system in which  education  is  no  longer  the  exclusive  attribute  of  certain  institutions  or  individuals  strictly qualified in this field. Opening schools to open-ended education has become a necessity and at the same  time  a  challenge  not  only  at  the  institutional  but  also  at  the  individual  level.  The  current society is characterized by an increasingly digitization. The fierce competition that characterizes the economic and social environment in which we operate is fully exploited by various great actors. The European Community makes no exceptions.

The European Commission adopted on 10 June 2016, The new Skills Agenda for Europe, that include 10 actions to make the right training, skills and support available to people in the EU. Among them, was  established  'Digital  Skills  and  Jobs  Coalition'  launched  in  December  2016  with  the  goal  of improving the digital skills of the wider population, not just IT professionals.

The  Coalition  on  Digital  Competitions  and  Jobs,  launched  by  the  EU,  aims  at  developing  digital talents on a widespread scale. It also aims to ensure that individuals and the workforce in Europe have the appropriate digital skills required by the labour market.

The strategy developed for this ”includes: 

◻  Establishing  national  digital  skills  coalitions  connecting  public  authorities,  business, education, training and labour market stakeholders.

◻  Developing  concrete  measures  to  bring  digital  skills  and  competences  to  all  levels  of education  and  training,  supporting  teachers  and  educators  and  promoting  active involvement of business and other organisations.”

The focus is on digital skills, that must be develop at any level, in any context, in a close connexion between educators and other stakeholders, beneficiaries of skilled workers and, in a broad sense, citizens.

Given these issues, it is self-evident why the current trends in European legislation are so surprising. Although there are global initiatives that want to contribute to the development of digital skills not only of young people, but also of people of all ages, like Hour of Code or Code Week, to which the European  Commission  has  also  joined,  it  is  often  deny  the  role  of  such  initiatives  in  personal development of digital abilities.

We  have  mentioned  this  movement,  as  it  is  an  example  of  cooperation  that  involve  official institutions together with organisations from industry and the non-profit sector in recognition of the vital need to empower young people to understand the theory and application of coding. This example  can  be  spread  for  others  initiatives,  which  will  help  the  main  purpose  of  empowering young generation with proper digital skills for labour life and not only.

As teachers, many of us also as parents, we are anyway in the middle of these disputes. That's why it's our job to look for solutions to  the issues raised by the use of mobile devices and dedicated applications in order to achieve the goals listed above.

Why  Mobile  Devices?  Because  this  is  a  trend,  given  the  benefits  offered,  such  as  freedom  of movement that does not restrict access to resources. And in terms of costs, this approach is better. If we also appeal to the BYOD method, the advantage that schools have it is obviously.

The exponential development of using the Internet and mobile devices for access and exploitation of digital resources by students has forced  us to adapt the techniques and methods that we, as teachers,  use  in  classrooms.  However,  these  devices  have  expanded  the  educational  process beyond the school boundaries, increasingly collaborating teacher-students, students-students or teacher-teachers, who are outside the same classroom, most of the time. But are we prepared for these  radical  changes  in  the  educational  paradigm?  Young  generations  of  teachers  in  some countries benefit from such specialized courses, during faculty, unfortunately only on a small scale. But  what  do  we  do  with  generations  that  have  been  educated  before  the  emergence  of  such technical cooperation and communication possibilities?

read / download Intellectual Output 3.2

Project no.  2016-1-RO01-KA201-024659, Duration: 24 months (01 / 10 / 2016 - 30 / 09 / 2018), Coordinator : Petronia Moraru, Colegiul Tehnic Edmond Nicolau Focsani.Funded by the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union. The European Commission support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the content, that reflects the views only of the authors. The Commission cannot be held responsi­ble for any use of the information contained herein.