Case 2 - What really happened and assignment

Smarphones for informal learning

The actual case only had 7,000 USD as a budget and was performed in Kenya and consisted of hardware and software. The researchers in that case chose to purchase 30 smartphones (very inexpensive Android) and gave them to 30 Kenyan runners who were extremely poor and generally uneducated (a few had completed secondary school). The participants used the smartphones for 1 year and had free Internet access during the research period. The researchers tracked all smartphone usage and created some mobile web apps that were used in addition to the standard apps. The study primarily studied how providing a smartphone could address poverty and improve informal learning i.e. learning that takes outside of formal learning settings. The participants participated in interviews and workshops throughout the year to determine the impact of the smartphone and apps on their learning, athletic training and ability to earn money. The results were fantastic and have shown that a simple smartphone can level the playing field for the extremely poor by providing access to communication (email, social media, etc.), information of all types (Wikipedia, news sites, bible, training sites, Google in general, etc.), and economic opportunities (advertising via social media, taking pictures/videos and selling them, etc.).

Assignment:

Please contrast your previous options with the ones made in the real case.

Discuss with your peers what are the probable consequences of those choices.

List the questions that you would formulate to the implementers of Plan Ceibal in order to gain a deeper understanding of it.

Discuss with your peers the replicability of this model in two other national contexts you know well.

Last modified: Thursday, 19 December 2013, 3:56 PM