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Mobilising teacher education: a study of a professional learning community

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This paper reports on a study of a community of university educators that investigated the introduction of mobile technologies into their learning and teaching. The study was conducted by a subgroup of that community. Given the ubiquity of mobile devices, members of the community felt they needed to develop expertise in mobile learning so that they could incorporate it into their teaching. They studied their own learning, supported by a critical friend who evaluated the community’s functioning and activities, providing valuable feedback. Activities of this group were informed by and focused on: development of awareness of the potential of mobile devices for learning; construction of action plans within the community; and implementation of these plans. They also included investigating best-practice approaches by interviewing experts in the field, exploring the literature on mobile learning and then initiating and testing some mobile learning pedagogies in the context of their own teacher education subjects. The community met regularly to discuss emerging issues and applications. The paper shares some of the findings gained from studying the community, and discusses the challenges and constraints that were experienced. The authors conclude with recommendations for professional learning communities aiming to learn about technology-mediated teaching practices.
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Keywords: community of learners; community of practice; higher education; mobile learning; professional learning community; teacher education; teacher learning

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Centre for Research in Learning and Change, University of Technology Sydney, Sydney, Australia 2: Centre for Educational Studies, University of Hull, Hull, UK

Publication date: February 1, 2013

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