Blended learning in Mobile learning: videoconferences, virtual classes and lots more…

Nov 16, 2020 | Product updates

In the era of digitalization and distancing, maintaining the human connection in a training course is crucial. Perfectly adapted to our modern learners’ lives, mobile learning should not however prevent us from exchanging with others, whether it be for stimulating collective intelligence within the group or simply enjoying sharing knowledge and developing together.

It is possible to use mobile learning to transform classroom learning into synchronous training with videoconferences and virtual classes.

 

Mobile learning — group or one-to-one videoconferences

With lessons, appropriation games, quizzes and educational videos all available as part of mobile training, videoconference activities can be used to enable trainers to discuss with learners either face to face or in a group, for a simple discussion or a virtual class.

While communicating with their trainer, learners can navigate through their training course.


Opening a videoconference activity (Teams) as part of a Teach on Mars mobile learning course

As well as reconnecting people and fostering communication, varying learning methods by combining moments of synchronous and asynchronous training enables us to create original training experiences and improves learner engagement.

 

Creating discussion time between trainers and learners

Whether it be for presenting a course, for evaluations half way through a course or for debriefing after a qualification has been obtained, discussion time between trainers and learners is an important part of a mobile course and should not be overlooked.

The good news is that with digital technology, solutions exist for just about everything. Finding a time slot with the trainer is even easier. When learners get to the synchronous training activity, they can use the application to access a calendar to select an available slot with the trainer, (for example using Calendly):

Calendly booking page Reserving a time slot with Calendly

Trainers and learners thus save precious time and receive a confirmation when a time slot has been booked. The slot can be added automatically to calendars on Google Calendar, Outlook, Office 365 and iCloud, etc.

Timeslot confirmation with Calendly

Reminder emails can even be configured for example one day and one hour before the time slot (whose length can also be set by the trainer).

 

A virtual class in mobile learning — group lessons and activities

In 2020, lockdown and the rapid expansion of remote working led to a shift from classroom training to synchronous training. Apart from discussions between trainers and learners, it is important to transform training rooms into attractive and flexible virtual classes for learners. With its gamified activities and varied learning methods, mobile learning is a perfectly tailored solution.

Learners go to the virtual class at a time previously agreed (indicated for example in the name of the teaching activity). They can then communicate with the trainer (or simply listen to him or her, as the trainer so wishes), while navigating through the activities of the mobile training course. Some activities can also be specifically dedicated to this virtual class.

Ecran de smartphone classe virtuelle mobile learning Reminder for a synchronous virtual class activity

As we saw in our article on the flipped classroom, the quality of synchronous sessions can be enhanced thanks to previously shared content. During virtual classes, learners can raise questions and discuss points they wish to learn more about. The trainer can thus better guide learners using existing content or by proposing new avenues of thought.

Apart from these direct interactions with the trainer, a group can work together to create various gamified activities — remotely and synchronously — with the Live! by Teach on Mars. Up to 100 people can participate simultaneously in brainstorming sessions and competitions (quizzes and games) with medals up for grabs. This is an excellent way to inject enthusiasm into mobile training courses.

 

Setting up a virtual class as part of a mobile learning course with Teach on Mars

Nothing could be simpler. Using a “web link” type activity in your course, you can add a link to an online meeting room (e.g.: Google Meet, Teams, Zoom, Webex, Whereby and so on) or to a time slot booking tool (e.g.: Calendly, see above).

You can create meetings with a fixed date and time or offer different time slots. The only limitations are those of the tools you are using.

At the date and time of the meeting, the trainer opens the meeting room (this is often necessary, especially with Teams, Zoom and Webex) from their computer or smartphone. Learners simply launch the activity to take part. Depending on the tool used, learners can be redirected to download the application (e.g.: Teams, Webex) or enter the meeting directly (e.g.: Google Meet, Whereby).

When everyone is connected, the trainer can ask learners to return to the training application; learners will continue to hear the trainer and will be able to navigate through the mobile course and do activities. Depending on the videoconference tool used and the type of smartphone, learners may even be able to see the trainer in a corner of the mobile screen during navigation on the training application.

It is time to reconnect, to make synchronous and asynchronous techniques live alongside one another and to create unique training experiences to foster learner engagement and develop skills. Be part of it!