Last updated: 10.01.12

New e-learning app developed 'to aid growth of virtual classroom'

Smartphone applications are set to be the future of online learning, according to one expert.

Monica Martinez, director of professional development for the Texas Computer Education Association, which promotes the use of technology in Texas classrooms, said that a lot of people use apps in everyday life and so there is good reason to believe that they can be successfully integrated into education to give learners of all ages a chance to connect their technological knowledge with educational resources.

She told the Killeen Daily Herald: "A lot of people use apps in their everyday life. Educators and districts are now realising that they can use these as a tool to transform education."

Commenting on the possibilities associated with implementing technology into learning via smartphone apps, Ms Martinez added: "It would change the face of education. You would be looking at digital learning in nearly every single classroom."

An application to help those using e-learning on the go has been developed by the co-founder of KidsandBeyond. Lexington-based Kannankote Sriram has worked with app developers to connect the world of Android with the virtual classroom and to enable the use of such resources to be spread wordwide to those who have access to e-learning technologies, the Boston Globe reports.

Mr Sriram stated that apps could significantly benefit learners in all countries and could create opportunities for Indian and Chinese migrants who are raising a new digital generation of multicultural children.

He added: "Kids don't look at error messages but they do view icons and smiley faces. We are constantly looking at how to make improvements in terms of usability."

Research from Flurry showed that app sales rose significantly during the festive period of 2011, with 1.2 billion sold between December 25th and 31st. 

Mr Sriram has worked to develop ten different apps which will all be targeted at learners. They will be available to purchase and download on iTunes, according to the expert.

Tom Kuhlmann, editor of The Rapid E-learning Blog, recently claimed that mobile technologies such as tablet computers and smartphones could revolutionise the market for distance learning.