Online Oxford Union Debate on the Future of Mobile Learning (mLearning) in Education
UNESCO in partnership with Education Fast Forward will be holding an online Oxford Union debate on mLearning from 18 to 26 September 2014.
Mobile learning has once again triggered a discussion on the potential of technology in education. Frequently seen as an opportunity for education transformation, expanding learning at home, and reaching marginalized populations from a geographical and/or social perspective, this mLearning debate will cover the ever-growing opportunities and challenges facing mLearning today.
UNESCO is proud to have Barbara Reynolds (Guyana) as the debate moderator, with Steve Vosloo (South Africa) arguing the side of the Idealist and Osama Manzar (India) taking on the perspective of the Realist.
For this Oxford Union debate, Steve Vosloo will be drawing on his experience as a mobile learning specialist in developing countries to convince audiences – as well as his opponent – that mLearning is indeed here to stay. As our Realist, Osama Manzar’s job will be to pick apart Vosloo’s Idealistic vision with the harsh facts and realities of mLearning in today’s world and education systems.
The topic of mLearning will be fully explored over the course of 9 days, with the debate clearly structured around three key phases of discussion:
1) The Opening: 18 September 2014
2) The Rebuttal: 23 September 2014
3) The Closing: 26 September 2014
With many opportunities to get involved, this debate on mLearning will allow participants to simply follow along, vote or comment – all on UNESCO’s WSIS Community platform. Create an account and participate in the debate by visiting us at the Oxford Debate on Mobile Learning.
Steve Vosloo is a mobile learning specialist with a particular focus on ICTs in developing countries. Currently he is Head of Mobile at Pearson South Africa, where he is responsible for setting the company's mobile learning strategy and delivering key projects. Founder of m4lit (mobiles for literacy), Vosloo has worked in South Africa and Kenya in order to demonstrate the usefulness of mobile devices in encouraging reading and writing for youth.
Osama Manzar is a convert social entrepreneur spearheading the mission to overcome the information barrier between India’s rural sector and the so-called developed society, through Digital Empowerment Foundation (DEF). Manzar has worked on ICTD case studies in over 2,000 villages in India and South Asia.
Barbara Reynolds is currently Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic Affairs) at the University of Guyana. Prior to this, she was the Head of Education for Save the Children UK and prior to that, spent twenty-two years with UNICEF in a range of capacities including representational and programme assignments in education, child protection and innovation.