Time to Engage? Texting to Support and Enhance First Year Undergraduate Learning
In this paper we discuss a case study investigating how the academic and personal development of first year students on an undergraduate sports education degree can be supported and enhanced with mobile SMS communication. SMS-based technologies were introduced in response to students’ particular needs (in transition to Higher Education) and characteristics (‘digital natives’). Despite being unaccustomed to using their mobile phones for academic study, students willingly participated in SMS communication with their tutor via a texting management service. Drawing on evidence from two student surveys, focus groups and a tutor’s journal, we illustrate the potential that mobile SMS communication has to link and establish continuity between face to face teaching sessions and online learning activities in the Virtual Learning Environment (VLE). Many students perceived the SMS communication to have had a positive impact on their management of study time. We link our findings with the existing literature and argue that mobile text based communication has the potential to support the development of time management skills, an important component of self regulatory learning, a skill which has been shown to be key in making a successful transition.
SMS; mobile phones; transition to HE; time management; text management service
International Journal of Interactive Mobile Technologies. ISSN: 1865-7923