NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ1063913
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Jul
Pages: 12
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0007-1013
You Can Lead a Horse to Water but You Cannot Make Him Learn: Smartphone Use in Higher Education
Tossell, Chad C.; Kortum, Philip; Shepard, Clayton; Rahmati, Ahmad; Zhong, Lin
British Journal of Educational Technology, v46 n4 p713-724 Jul 2015
Smartphone technology is penetrating world markets and becoming ubiquitous in most college settings. This study takes a naturalistic approach to explore the use of these devices to support student learning. Students that had never used a smartphone were recruited to participate and reported on their expectations of the value of smartphones to achieve their educational goals. Instrumented iPhones that logged device usage were then distributed to these students to use freely over the course of 1 year. After the study, students again reported on the actual value of their smartphones to support their educational goals. We found that students' reports changed substantially before and after the study; specifically, the utility of the smartphone to help with education was perceived as favorable prior to use, and then, by the end of the study, they viewed their phones as detrimental to their educational goals. Although students used their mobile device for informal learning and access to school resources according to the logged data, they perceived their iPhones as a distraction and a competitor to requisite learning for classroom performance.
Wiley-Blackwell. 350 Main Street, Malden, MA 02148. Tel: 800-835-6770; Tel: 781-388-8598; Fax: 781-388-8232; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: National Science Foundation
Authoring Institution: N/A
IES Grant or Contract Numbers: 0803556