Learning and Teaching as Communicative Actions

A Theory for Mobile Education

Authored by: Scott J. Warren , Jenny S. Wakefield

Handbook of Mobile Learning

Print publication date:  April  2013
Online publication date:  June  2013

Print ISBN: 9780415503693
eBook ISBN: 9780203118764
Adobe ISBN: 9781136311536

10.4324/9780203118764.ch7

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Abstract

As mobile devices and applications have increasingly been employed to support formal and informal learning, theories used to guide such implementations have come from traditional sources: information processing, social and radical constructivism, and even behaviorist traditions. However, what differentiates these mobile tools from other technologies used for learning is that they stem from the primary purpose of the devices: communication. This communication comes from multiple avenues, ranging from voice calls and text messaging to global positioning systems that situate learning in the local space by embedding metadata and learning activities. Because mobile devices often include a broad array of communicative features, it becomes important to develop theory that guides their use and that focuses on the communication affordances. This is especially important when viewed from the perspective of their ability to support learning discourses that situate learners in meaningful, real-world contexts. Further, such a guiding theory should value discourse as a means to support students as they argue toward shared, intersubjective understandings about the topic at hand. The question, then, is what theory can be used to support the communication that mobile devices allow as a means of fostering learning? To that end, learning and teaching as communicative actions (LTCA) theory offers one possible avenue (Wakefield, Warren, & Alsobrook, 2011).

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