Mobile learning policy and practice in Africa: Towards inclusive and equitable access to higher education

Rogers Kaliisa, Michelle Picard

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)
25 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

This article presents the results of a review of practice and policy in relation to mobile learning and its potential to enhance inclusive and equitable access to higher education in Africa. We reviewed academic literature on potential barriers. Then, we explored the current state of the mobile learning policy environment in 10 African countries through an analysis of how these policies have tried to address the prominent challenges in the adoption of mobile learning as identified in the literature. The findings reveal that significant resourcing inequalities and epistemological, sociocultural, and institutional barriers remain and affect mobile learning adoption. The analysis also reveals that there is still a policy vacuum in relation to mobile learning specific policies within African higher education institutional and governmental policies. Thus, the formal integration of mobile learning in higher education to facilitate equitable access is very much in its infancy. This article suggests a strong need for institutional, cross-institutional, national and African-wide mobile learning specific policies to ensure better implementation of mobile learning. As interest in mobile learning continues to grow, this review will provide insights into policy and strategic planning for the adoption of mobile learning to achieve inclusive and equitable access to higher education. Implications for practice or policy:Implications for practice or policy: • Relevant stakeholders such as decision makers in governments and higher educational institutions should play a more proactive role in developing explicit national and local mobile learning policies and guidelines to support inclusive and equitable access to higher education. • The development of mobile learning policies needs to explicitly address and consider the intrinsic economic, social, regional, and gender inequalities existing within African countries.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-14
Number of pages14
JournalAustralasian Journal of Educational Technology
Volume35
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Africa
  • Policy
  • Higher education
  • Equity
  • Mobile learning

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