Studying online

There are now 2 possible online modes for units:

Units with modes Online timetabled and Online flexible are available for any student to self-enrol and study online.

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Unit Overview


This unit explores mobile learning around the globe, taking in issues in the developing and developed world, spanning the whole range of technology from feature phones to smart devices and wearables, and exploring educational possibilities from e-books and apps through multimedia recording and social/professional networking to QR codes and immersive augmented reality.

The unit demonstrates that new technologies function within complex cultural, social, political, economic and educational ecologies, resulting in different possibilities in diverse cultural contexts. Following an introduction to educational theory, the unit looks at how mobile learning may fit with a variety of educational approaches. Formal and informal mobile learning in the developed and developing world is compared and contrasted, with a number of case studies examined in detail, and the idea that mobile technologies can reach and connect the entire population is critiqued. Networked learning in different contexts, including the role of such learning in social and political events around the world, is also examined.

In addition, there is a close examination of students' own current or future integration of mobile tools to reach and connect with others, and to support their learning. Here, the unit focuses on tools such as feature phones, smartphones, tablets and digital media players, and approaches such as the educational use of SMS, e-books, apps, polling, multimedia recording, QR codes and augmented reality are covered. Following the current shift in Western education to a BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) model, students are invited to use their own mobile devices to undertake unit tasks, but there is no obligation to do so, as all tasks can be completed on desktop or laptop computers, such as those available in the GSE computer laboratory and other laboratories on campus. Commonly available, free software is recommended to students.

6 points
Not available in 2024UWA (Perth)Face to face
Details for undergraduate courses
  • Level 1 elective

Students are able to (1) know and understand that new technologies function within complex cultural, social, political, economic and educational ecologies, resulting in different possibilities in diverse cultural contexts; (2) know and understand the specific affordances of mobile devices for formal, informal and networked learning in diverse cultural contexts; (3) know and understand the use of mobile devices for formal and informal learning in both the developing and developed world; (4) apply their knowledge and understanding of mobile devices to support their own learning in the current and future contexts, and critically examine this usage; (5) critically examine the use of mobile devices for formal and informal learning in both the developing and developed world; (6) critically examine the notion of mobile devices delivering digital education and information for all; and (7) create a series of recommendations on using mobile technologies to support learning, for other learners in their major study area.


Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) weekly online tasks and (2) Multimodal assignment. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Student may be offered supplementary assessment in this unit if they meet the eligibility criteria.

Unit Coordinator(s)
Associate Professor Mark Pegrum
Contact hours
9 x 1 hour lectures, 10 x 1 hour tutorials, and 8 hours online tasks (approx.)
  • The availability of units in Semester 1, 2, etc. was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change.
  • All students are responsible for identifying when they need assistance to improve their academic learning, research, English language and numeracy skills; seeking out the services and resources available to help them; and applying what they learn. Students are encouraged to register for free online support through GETSmart; to help themselves to the extensive range of resources on UWA's STUDYSmarter website; and to participate in WRITESmart and (ma+hs)Smart drop-ins and workshops.
  • Unit readings, including any essential textbooks, are listed in the unit outline for each unit, one week prior the commencement of study. The unit outline will be available via the LMS and the UWA Handbook one week prior the commencement of study. Reading lists and essential textbooks are subject to change each semester. Information on essential textbooks will also be made available on the Essential Textbooks. This website is updated regularly in the lead up to semester so content may change. It is recommended that students purchase essential textbooks for convenience due to the frequency with which they will be required during the unit. A limited number of textbooks will be made available from the Library in print and will also be made available online wherever possible. Essential textbooks can be purchased from the commercial vendors to secure the best deal. The Student Guild can provide assistance on where to purchase books if required. Books can be purchased second hand at the Guild Secondhand bookshop (second floor, Guild Village), which is located on campus.
  • Contact hours provide an indication of the type and extent of in-class activities this unit may contain. The total amount of student work (including contact hours, assessment time, and self-study) will approximate 150 hours per 6 credit points.