When Scott Davis, Technology Services Director of Applications Services, and his team set out to create a mobile campus application (“app”) for Virginia Commonwealth University (“VCU”), they didn’t just envision creating another app but rather, an extension of the school. To ensure this, Davis and his team partnered with Blackboard to develop a platform that combined VCU’s vision to bring technology to the campus and Blackboard’s expertise in building mobile applications that transform learning.
In the competitive environment to attract talented students in higher education, universities are looking to have an edge. They struggle to meet the needs and expectations of millennial and non-traditional students. Students are using their mobile devices for email, text messaging, and social networking.
Furthermore, today’s student is entering college already familiar with a course management system from their K12 environment. Through VCU Mobile, VCU is able to keep students engaged so they are more invested in the classroom, more likely to capitalize on resources provided by the institution, and ultimately perform better academically.
“Mobile brings down the classroom barrier and makes for a more engaging experience” says Davis.
Just because something is getting a sudden burst of attention, does not mean it’s a passing fad. And that’s what we’ve tried to prove about social learning over the past few weeks. (Ex: Myth 1 – Social learning isn’t new!)
So, what gives social learning this broad appeal and staying power? Multiple studies and stories confirm students’ increased immersion in technology gives them the experiences, relationships, and stimulation that helps them stay better engaged in their learning experience, plus these technologies are something they are increasingly unable to live without.
Social learning is not going away, and in fact, it will continue to be bolstered by technology and students’ adoption of it.
Our fourth and final myth busted here: Social Learning Doesn’t Have Broad Appeal
Have you ever been on your way to tailgate when you realized you forgot to post a comment to your class discussion board? What do you do? About face, go back to your dorm, sit down, plug away and miss out on the fun? Or forgo the assignment all together?
How about neither?
What do I mean? Well, with Blackboard Mobile Learn, you can check grades, grab presentations and documents, even post on your class discussion board right from your phone. And, now access to the app is only a few taps away on iOS or Android.
Playgrounds and roller coasters are just for fun. Social Learning is fun too, but it serves multiple educational purposes and has tangible benefits for both the students and the institutions involved. In today’s classrooms, the idea of social learning is taking hold in a variety of ways. Educators are seeing that social learning may include external elements that could be regarded as ‘just for fun,’ like Facebook, Twitter and blogging, but that really these are beneficial to the learning experience. Experiencing it firsthand demonstrates how the interconnected, interactive nature of social learning amplifies the rate at which content can be shared and digested.
Take a look and see how social learning plays a significant role in the serious endeavor of educating today’s students for Duke University professor, Cathy Davidson. Are her techniques just ‘fun’ or important enhancements to the educational experience?
We’re myth-busting. Click here to read on: Social Learning Is Just for Fun
We all know that people learn in different ways, at different paces, and with different strengths. Classroom teachers work hard to incorporate all of these differences into their plans and create successful personalized learning experiences for each student. Now, more and more students carry with them a tool that can help teachers with this challenge. Students are not the only ones who are more likely to be using mobile devices to accomplish tasks – parents, teachers, and administrators are too.