Mobile devices are now extensively for learning, in addition to the traditional use of making voice-calls. With internet connectivity, mobile learning provides modern users with access to learning – anywhere and anytime. These devices can connect with each other and allow learners learn collaboratively in groups. There are various ways that mobile learning is being utilized – and one of the most common is by creating mobile-based learning game.
Here are a few ways that games can be an effective tool for mobile learning:
• The focus of mobile learning games has to be the knowledge or skill it imparts. Corporate learners prefer games which have a clear learning focus and provide multiple opportunities to learn new things within the environment. Learning games can teach new skills, enhance knowledge, provide opportunities for practice and provide feedback on performance as well. This checks all the boxes in the list of expectations that most corporate learners have from workplace learning opportunities.
• While games are very appropriate for the mobile platform and most learners are used to playing popular games on their devices, designing games for mobile devices should take into considerations the screen size and mobile specific capabilities like touch screens Many developers are not very enthusiastic about mobile learning games being touch-screen enabled, due to the simple reason that they want the games to be accessible to the learners on laptops and computers as well – most of which do not have touch screen feature. But this apprehension is beginning to fade as most learners are clearly showing their preferences for mobile learning games – especially the ones that are designed to perform best on mobile devices.
• The biggest benefit of mobile learning is that it provides learning opportunities anywhere and anytime. This benefit is enhanced further for learning games as most learners are willing to try out the game even in their free time, making use of non-productive times like travelling or waiting between jobs and so on. Mobile platform provides an unobtrusive way of learning through games – even when there is no or limited internet access.
• Furthermore gaming is a powerful medium of collaborative learning. Learners can connect with other learners through the game by posting scores or achievements on a ‘leaders’ board’ or sharing tips on a discussion board. Slow learners can ask for help and get it from achievers who have been performing exceptionally. Not only can this boost the morale of the learner’s group but also boost the spirit for a healthy competition. Collaborative tools built within the games like a comments section can be the collaborative ground for discussions and learning. It can also give helpful tips to developers who want to understand what works best for learners and align learning content as per the preferences of the learners.
Mobile devices and games make a great combination, not just for entertainment but for learning too. With the evolution of gaming technology and better mobile devices, the experience of game-based learning is becoming more impactful than ever.