Making the Case for Mobile Collaborative Learning for Reading Comprehension on Handheld Computers

By Jason Black and Lois W. Hawkes.

Published by The Technology Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Current collaborative learning systems have effective in improving comprehension in math and science domains, but other disciplines have been largely ignored. One such area in need is reading comprehension, where recent studies have shown that skill level among American younger readers (grades 1 through 3) is below standard. Many technological efforts have been implemented to improve reading comprehension in the classroom, but few of these focus on developing cognition. Other strategies have been implemented that stress cognitive development, but do not involve use of technology in their effort. The proposed work makes the case for development of a mobile learning system that combines a collaborative, interactive environment with proven reading comprehension strategies to strengthen reading comprehension skills of younger readers. It proposes the incorporation of Question-Answer Relationships (QAR), which guides students in being able to extract main idea and content information from text through question answering, identifying and generation. The system is designed for the Personal Digital Assistant (PDA) platform, and facilitates students working in teams using interactive tools to enable communication, cooperation and feedback. This system also incorporates speech recognition as an input mechanism, allowing younger students (for whom stylus input could be difficult) to use voice input to aid in communication. Student progress and performance is monitored, and students are able to progress and build their knowledge at their own pace. The researchers propose that the advantages seen in previous research combined with the gains in comprehension seen in QAR research, when coupled with this innovative technology, will lead to improved comprehension skills of readers significantly over the traditional method of developing reading comprehension.

Keywords: Mobile Learning, Classwide Peer Tutoring, Recipricol Tutoring, Peer-Assisted Learning Strategies, Question-Answer Relationships, Personal Digital Assistant

The International Journal of Technology, Knowledge and Society, Volume 3, Issue 5, pp.37-46. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1007.582KB).

Dr. Jason Black

Assistant Professor, Computer and Information Sciences, Florida A&M University, Tallahassee, FL, USA

He has a Ph.D. in Computer Science from Florida State University, a M.S. degree in Computer Science from Georgia Institute of Technology, and a B.S. degree in Computer Information Systems from Florida A&M University. his research interests include Mobile Computing, Collaborative Mobile Learning (M-Learning), User Interface Design for Mobile Devices, Ambient or Ubiquitous Computing, and Educational Technology. he has a particular interest in developing learning applications for Personal Digital Assistants (PDAs) with a focus outside of math and science, such as reading comprehension. He has been an Assistant Professor at FAMU for 6 years.

Dr Lois W. Hawkes

Associate Dean, College of Arts and Sciences, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL, USA

Dr. Hawkes is co-director of the satellite facility of the High-performance Computing & Simulation Research Laboratory (HCS). This lab was established in 1993 by Dr. Alan George to investigate a wide variety of topics in high-performance computing and communications, including computer networks and architecture, parallel computing, distributed computing, and fault-tolerant computing. Topics of interest include the following: * large-scale storage transmission over high-speed networks * iSCSI environments * network congestion * fault-tolerance and self-healing on networks * load balancing of network flow. * virtual topologies

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