UNESCO Mobile Learning Week 2016: Innovation for quality education

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How best to harness the power, growth and affordability of mobile technology to ensure all students receive high quality education? That’s the question at the heart of UNESCO’s flagship ICT event, Mobile Learning Week 2016, taking place at the Organization’s headquarters from 7-11 March 2016.

The event brings together world technology experts, government representatives, education specialists, project managers, researchers and industry partners to share experiences on how best to forge access and quality to ensure all students receive the education and training they need to fully participate in knowledge economies.

Mobile Learning Week has the goals of the Education 2030 Agenda firmly at its core. The internationally agreed Education 2030 Framework for Action calls on countries to ‘harness’ information and communication technology (ICT) to ‘promote quality and effective learning’.

"Technology is changing as we speak and this is UNESCO’s chance to take stock annually of new ways to leverage it for learning. Mobile Learning Week is a dynamic information exchange bringing experts from around the world together to improve education access and quality,” says UNESCO programme specialist Mark West, who is coordinating the event.

How mobile technology can best fill the education gap

Worldwide, access to and use of inexpensive smartphones and tablet computers has grown enormously. The event will explore how this technology can be used to reach new learners, connect education and work, empower lifelong learners and level the playing field for women and girls.

It will also address how technology can confront education challenges such as shortage of learning content, poorly designed courses, irrelevant curriculum, insufficiently trained teachers and limited oversight. Dynamic educational material enabled by Open Educational Resources can offer new types of cost- effective learning relevant to developed and developing countries alike.

This year’s event will also highlight lessons learned from earlier roll-outs of educational technology to ensure that new investments in ICT meaningfully improve student learning.

Four core objectives, four main events

The event will examine three main subthemes; making high-quality education a reality for all learners; improving pedagogy and the relevance of learning, and enhancing management, planning and evaluation spread across four main events:

  • A Webinar partnered with Education Fast Forward which will look at how and to what extent mobile technology can facilitate learning and strengthen the quality of education and which will bring remote participants to the table to pose questions to expert speakers
  • Twelve Workshops to enhance the capacity of mobile learning practitioners through knowledge-sharing
  • A two-day Symposium convening government representatives, education specialists, mobile learning experts, project managers, researchers and industry partners to share mobile learning innovations and strategies to improve quality
  • A Policy Forum jointly organized with ITU to share ideas for promoting mobile learning and other technology-based innovations with successful policy interventions

UNESCO will feature a series of interviews with key participants in the run-up to MLW.

To register for Mobile Learning Week 2016 and learn more about the event, please visit: www.unesco.org/new/en/mlw.

Links

ICT in Education
UNESCO Institute for Information Technologies in Education