Smart Learning: Unveiling Five Transformative Ways Smartphones Are Redefining Education

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Information at Your Fingertips: Revolutionizing Research and Learning

It’s hard to imagine a student without a smartphone these days. The modern curriculum relies heavily on internet access and in developed countries, it is assumed that you can research anything online. Every student has a laptop. And if they don’t, the college library can provide them with access to one. Many even use their phones exclusively due to the sheer convenience. It’s natural to always have your phone on you. The second you are not sure about any piece of information, you reach into your pocket to google it.

Some students don’t even feel the need to use a laptop as much anymore. They look up everything on their phones because a phone is always on and near you at all times. The ubiquitous use of mobile devices for internet access dictates the rules of website creation, as well. A website won’t survive if it’s not optimized for mobile access. Some students forgo their laptops altogether in favor of using a tablet. It’s lightweight, takes less space and has nearly all the same functions, especially if you get a keyboard for it.

App-Based Learning: Interactive and Engaging Educational Tools

The popularity of mobile devices also influences the app market. There are many apps developed specifically for education purposes. Students planners, language learning, memorization techniques – you can download an app for anything these days. And the best part is that most of these apps are free and available on any device.

Khan academy is a free learning resource for self-education. It offers an endless list of subjects for all academic levels – from middle school to college. You can learn virtually any subject, whether in your school curriculum or not, and even prepare for tests. Put in a simple form of short videos, it makes education accessible and easy. You can download an app to learn anytime, anywhere.

Duolingo is probably the most popular language learning resource. The app offers courses in over forty languages, but also math and music. It is gamified, meaning learning through it feels like you are playing a game, this approach makes learning less taxing and easier for the user. The lessons are fun and versatile. It helps train not only visual comprehension of the language, but also auditory. It has a free and paid account version, but you are not pressured into making any purchases if you don’t want to. While many agree that it should not be chosen as your singular language learning resource, it still can be a great addition to an ongoing practice.

Quizlet is an educational app made to help you prepare for tests. It can also be used for language learning, or any other learning, frankly. The flash cards idea is very simple – you have a task on one side and the answer on another. If you’re learning a language, you have the foreign word on one side and native on the other. You can create your own flashcards or even browse the collections other people have created.

Connecting Minds: Smartphones in Collaborative Education

Covid-19 has brought many changes into education. Most people have been home-bound, which put a temporary stall into higher ed. However, new and innovative solutions have emerged and since, have stayed in our daily lives. Tools like Zoom gained a massive rise in popularity over the course of 2020. Since then, it has become a part of our lives and a go-to method for online communication.

Distance learning now does not seem like something out of a sci-fi movie. It’s become customary for professors to film lectures and upload them online. Professors have been forced to get acquainted with technology, and now, you can finally reach your professor by email anytime. It used to be common for professors to hand out material and expect students to turn in physical copies of their essays.

Now, learning has moved primarily online. Submitting essays through a college platform fosters responsibility and accountability. If you’re late, you can’t beg the professor to take your essay. Once the online submission form closes, it’s done. While it may seem drastic, it is a good thing. Student years are exactly when your core qualities form, so it’s the perfect time for learning to be responsible for your actions.

Students still use many methods of distance learning for their own convenience. Study groups through Google Meets make more sense if members of the group live far away. Why would you spend two hours commuting if you can just turn on your laptop or phone?

Personalized Learning for Every Student

The wide availability of smartphones also promotes inclusivity, especially in education. Most modern devices offer functionality to promote inclusion. People with visual impairments can make use of functions like captioning, scalable fonts, screen reading and adaptable interfaces. With these functions, they may not need to be separated from the rest of the class. Instead, they can be integrated into the community without any worries.

People without disabilities also have diverse learning needs. Some are visual learners, while some are auditory. The accessibility of technology can support those needs and help every student get the level of education they deserve. For auditory learners, text-to-speech software can be greatly beneficial. The availability of textbooks in audio format is also a huge benefit for everyone – from neurodivergent individuals to visually impaired.

Apps also play a massive role in personalizing education. Sometimes, a student may not find the curriculum clear enough. This is when self education through apps like the aforementioned Khan academy can be lifesaving. Learning at your own pace through a medium that you have chosen for yourself is something that would be considered impossible just 15 years ago. But now, everyone can study wherever they like, whether connected to their curriculum or not.

Language learning apps can also be an excellent addition to your school lessons. Because of the gamified process, studying with an app like Duolingo does not feel like a chore. It is perceived more like a game, hence is less taxing and demanding. A student can use those apps while commuting, waiting in line or instead of scrolling. Due to their immersive nature, the information is retained better but without the mental load.

Beyond the Classroom Walls: Extending Learning with Smartphones

The learning opportunities your phone gives you are truly unmatched. You can study without even using your laptop now. Research has never been easier with all the functions that a phone has. Most recent models offer a split screen feature, which makes your phone even closer to the laptop’s functionality.

Smartphones really give you the freedom that no other device could. You can use them anytime, any place, for whatever you want. Download an app and learn a language for five minutes every day before bed. Teach yourself to edit photo or video content. Film and shoot everything you see and learn to find beauty in everything around you. Find a free online course and take it at your own pace, in your free time to start getting ready for your career before you even graduate. The possibilities are truly endless.