Promoting Education in Developing Countries – The Potential of Mobile Apps
According to the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, there are around 75 million children, all over the globe, who have absolutely no access and opportunity of going to primary school.
Social crises of different kinds, wars, social mores and so many other factors have contributed to this rather bleak scenario. Apart from the amazing work done by various governments, international, local, national, non- governmental and charitable bodies to alleviate this scenario, there is technology too.
One of the biggest factors in using mobile apps to promote education in developing countries is the fact that mobile phone use in these countries is greater than in developed countries.
Why mobile apps?
Education is a life-enriching "tool" and so are mobile apps. To paraphrase a World Bank Report *, "Mobile applications empower individual users and enrich lifestyles."
There are plenty of programs and initiatives that are shaping the future for young people everywhere. By delivering learning and education in the palms of their hands, m-learning or mobile learning is here to stay indeed.
So, now that the undeniable role of apps in education has been established, shall we take a look at exactly how this works?
Tapping into the interests of young people is a great way to promote learning and education. Can you imagine using an educational app like "Nine Minutes" to learn all about pregnancy and maternal health? Well, this is exactly what this cool tool does!
"The Patels" is also an app made by the same developers, which among other things, talks about education and is aimed at the Indian society.
Step In Where Teachers Cannot
Education based apps can step in where teachers cannot. Now, this is not to undermine a teacher's important role. But take a scenario where a young child is stuck in a remote village which is mobile-connected but lacks the infrastructure of a school.
With an app-rich mobile device in his hand, a child can have access to subjects like math and science and be able to go beyond the limits of his little village, at least in terms of learning.
Another potential area of applications lies in getting hold of reading material like books, textbooks, research reports and so on through the mobile. Apps are also a handy way of doing research into almost any area of education that will interest a young person.
Better Career Prospects
One purpose of education is to enhance career prospects and something like language lessons can make people more "hireable". Mobile apps can deliver language lessons as well. Countries like India, Uganda and Ghana, to name a few have used this mobile app to great effect.
The sheer number of categories of learning that are possible with the help of mobile apps is mind-blowing. There is engineering, cognitive learning and instructional design to name just a few. Game based learning also has a huge potential —- teaching people about health, financial management and other subjects; that is the strength of technology indeed.
Information Source: http://elibrary.worldbank.org/content/book/9780821389911