Use of Tablet Computers to Improve Access to Education in a Remote Location
A research project was carried out in using mobile learning to increase access to education. This project is contributing to the achievement of Goal 4 of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which is to “Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all”. The mobile learning project involved the use of mobile technology to deliver learning materials to students to provide flexibility of access. Students used tablet computers to access electronic learning materials from the Aptus local server without having to connect to the Internet. The Aptus system is portable and was designed by the Commonwealth of Learning to allow learners to connect to digital learning platforms and access course materials without the need for Internet access. The project was implemented in a school in Pakistan. A total of 74 Grade 8, 9, and 10 students were involved in this project. The research revealed a positive impact on students and on learning as a result of their participation in the mobile learning project: students were better able to use the mobile technology for learning. Both students and parents also indicated that the project increased the students’ knowledge on the use of tablets for learning. Parents indicated that the mobile learning project increased their childrens’ interest in studying. Teachers also acknowledged that the students were taking more interest in classroom learning and concentrated on their tablets during study. Students were tested before and after they were supplied with content on their tablets. The post-test scores were significantly higher than the pre-test scores, indicating the use of the tablets for learning improved students’ performance.