The emergence of mobile computing and communication technologies has come with it, an unprecedented transformation in digitalising every aspect of human activities. This transformation has brought about a high degree of mobility in the way knowledge is constructed, processed, stored and disseminated through the use of portable information and communication technologies (ICTs)such as smart phones, tablets, personal computers and laptop computers. These mobile devices use mobile communication infrastructure to promote the mobility affordances for human activities anywhere and anytime.
Although education and technology have evolved in tandem over the past years, this dissertation recognises the lapse that there is, in not being able to effectively leverage technology to improve education delivery by most educators. The study appreciates the enormousness of mobile computing and communication technologies in contributing to the development of tertiary education delivery, and has taken keen interest to investigate how the capacities of these technologies can be leveraged and incorporated effectively into the pedagogic framework of tertiary education. The purpose is to research into how these ubiquitous ICTs can be used to facilitate teaching and learning, based on a conceptual framework, which uses mobile learning platform to supplement traditional face-to-face method of education. The study uses both qualitative and quantitative data with action research as the strategy of inquiry.
The study was situated within a developing country context using Ghana as the case study. In view of this, the m-learning project of Central University College with student population of about 10,000 and teaching staff of 143 was purposefully and conveniently selected as the case study for this thesis.
The analysis of the results conducted after rigorous theoretical and empirical research unveiled the following: Mobile technologies can be incorporated into tertiary education if it has a strong theoretical underpinning, which links technology and pedagogy; the technology would not work if the user’s concerns in relation to the use of the technology is not holistically resolved; mobile technologies offer tremendous opportunities for the generation, processing, storing and disseminating knowledge. These findings led to the conceptualisation of the STUMP framework as a theoretical contribution for ensuring effective leveraging and incorporation of mobile computing and communication technologies into tertiary education.
Date of defense: 29.08.2013