On Going Mobile

I just got back from another fantastic research trip in the UK.  I spend quite a bit of time there, probably anywhere between 6 to 8 weeks during any given year, mostly in Cornwall and London.  Of course for my teaching needs, I always make sure that I have access to an Internet connection.  This time, I learned quite a bit about online teaching capacities in countries that aren’t quite as well served by fast internet service.  In both Cornwall and inland and I had many internet related problems.  Sometimes it was slow, sometimes the wireless connection the house where I was staying could not handle three computers at the same time, and of course, this affected the way in which I teach and work.  I found it was very difficult for me to access my learning platforms, and it was extremely difficult for me to download papers to read and grade.  I felt quite frustrated. If this is my experience in Britain, I can only imagine what things must be like for my students, many of whom are in the military, or maybe doing their own travel somewhere for work or play.  You know what always loaded, though, was Facebook!  When I couldn’t get into Blackboard or ANGEL, Facebook always loaded quickly and easily, and allowed me to use the very basic interactive features that I needed.  Hmmm. This might make us want to think about the kinds of platforms that we use, the kind of features we add to our courses. We need to push for versions of them that are mobility friendly, and easier to use on less robust systems.  This way, we can keep online learning as accessible as possible.

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Online Educational Specialist