Towards a mobile learning environment at Caritas Institute of Higher Education

Lai-On Chun, Wing-Hang Yu, Wai-Man Pang and Jeff K T Tang
Caritas Institute of Higher Education
Hong Kong SAR,China

Applying mobile technologies in an e-learning system is an irreversible trend nowadays due to the rapid expansion in the number of mobile users in recent years, as well as the change of study habits among current college students. The ubiquitous nature of mobile learning is attractive to students as they can enjoy the flexibility of learning at any time and anywhere.

In this paper, we present a prototype system for mobile learning developed at the Caritas Institute of Higher Education. Our prototype system contains three major sub-systems — the mobile course management system, the mobile library information system and the mobile 3D library navigation system. Students can access course contents and materials in both textual and multimedia format from the mobile devices. An online quiz and exercises can be conducted via this mobile platform so that the students may easily evaluate their understanding via an immediate response from the system.

The library information system works as an additional source of reference to assist learning and teaching for both the students and teachers. The users are able to search and access library resources instantly if they are in a digitized format; otherwise, reservations can be made via the mobile system.

It is reported that the utilization of facilities in the library is low, with about 10% of respondents having never visited the campus library. Therefore, the mobile 3D library navigation system tries to attract students’ attention with a fancy 3D user interface and environment, so as to introduce the available facilities for learning and discussion in the campus library.

A preliminary evaluation of the system has been performed by collecting the opinions of students in the college about the prototype system. Eleven students were invited to experience the three subsystems and over 70% of them found the proposed system to be satisfactory.