Mobile Learning Via Sms Among Distance Learners: Does Learning Transfer Occur?

Topics: Educational psychology, Learning, Educational technology Pages: 18 (5266 words) Published: July 11, 2013

Mobile Learning Via SMS Among Distance Learners: Does Learning Transfer Occur? doi:10.3991/ijim.v4i3.1180

Aznarahayu Ramli, Issham Ismail, and Rozhan Md. Idrus
Universiti Sains Malaysia, Penang, Malaysia

Abstract—The purpose of this study is to determine whether learners are willing to transfer learning in this mobile learning environment via SMS. The reason for this is to measure the effectiveness of the new method used in learning and education especially in distance education field. For this reason, students’ responses are gathered which looked at three factors namely learner characteristic, learning design and learning environment. The data are gathered through a survey research design with questionnaires using five-point likert scale. The questionnaires was administered for 105 distance education students from four courses including Bachelor of Science, Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Social Science and Bachelor of Management. The Rasch Model Analysis was used to measure these dimensions. Rasch Model is a one-parameter logistic model within item response theory (IRT) whereby the amount of a given latent trait in a person and the amount of that same latent trait reflected in various items can be estimated independently yet still compared explicitly to one another. The result of the study showed that learning transfer occurred and being influenced most by learner’s characteristics especially in term of their motivation as well as their perceive utility/value of the SMS learning to their job and academic performances. Index Terms—Mobile Learning, SMS, Distance Education, Learning Transfer.

factors of their mains electricity, computer hardware and internet connectivity are stable, reliable, cheap and abundant. For example, in developed countries such as US and Europe, the Windows and Palm-base personal digital assistants (PDA) are widely used to provide media-rich educational content [7]. However, in developing Asian countries such as Malaysia, the high cost of ownership and connection of the devices makes it impossible to apply those devices in learning and educational context. In this case, the more accessible and popular mobile or cell phones can be used instead. A. Background of the Study The penetration rate of mobile phones in Malaysia has exceeded 100.0%. This occurs because of multiple subscriptions by the citizens. This phenomenon shows a significant growth of mobile phone adoption in Malaysia and the Malaysians are keen in owning and using mobile phone in which the data provided by Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission [8] showed that 90.3 % of Malaysians own mobile phones. The data also showed that 50.4 % of the mobile phones users sent more than 5 SMS per day. The advantages of mobile devices such as limitless mobility and small size can bring new dimensions to the learning processes of the students especially for distance learning students who are always on the go and on the move [9]. Jacob and Issac [10] in their study, resounding the facts that, the goal of mobile learning is to facilitate learning and hoping that in future, learning can be ubiquitously with the aid of wireless convergence. They also addressed the issue regarding the challenges of mobile learning includes the instructional strategies, learning content and design that promotes to continuous learning activity. Learners should experience mobile learning in order to know the learning process through that method. The purpose of the learning experience is for the learners to gain skills and knowledge through learning process and / or for there to be a change in attitudes and beliefs [11]. Huczynski and Lewis [12] also reported that the learning experience that learners gained will promote to the motivation to transfer learning. Transfers of learning refers to a situation whereby a student learns behaviors, skills, and knowledge in one context and...

References: This work was supported in part by the Universiti Sains Malaysia under RU Grant 1001/PJJAUH/817015. Manuscript received on December 28th, 2009. Published as resubmitted by the authors on June 29th, 2010.
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