This one-year empirical study explores students’ perception and use of Personal Digital Assistants (PDAs) to support their learning at a university in Hong Kong. Drawing on the results from the analysis of in-depth interviews, observations, student e-journals and artifacts created using the PDA, the authors suggest that the extent to which student learning practices are supported by the use of the PDA depends largely on student perception of the PDA affordances and constraints for varied learning activities. Seven categories of PDA tools that students perceived for learning are identified. They include: multimedia collection, multimedia access, communication, knowledge construction, connectivity, representation, and scheduling tools. These tools were used individually or together with other tools to support learning by exploring, learning by reflecting, learning by visualizing, learning by constructing, learning by conversing, learning by sharing, and learning by organizing in different learning activities. In addition, constraints of PDA use for learning practices are analyzed in terms of physical, logical and cultural factors. Discussions and implications regarding findings are explored. Copyright © 2008 Office of Research, Faculty of Education, University of Hong Kong.
|Title of host publication||Research studies in education|
|Editors||Robin Rochelle MELLECKER, Yau-ho Paul WONG, Kam-hung Leo YU|
|Place of Publication||Hong Kong|
|Publisher||Office of Research, Faculty of Education, University of Hong Kong|
|Publication status||Published - Dec 2008|
CitationSong, Y. (2008). Affordances and constraints of personal digital assistants for learning. In R. R. Mellecker, Y.-H. P. Wong & K.-H. L. Yu (Eds.), Research studies in education (Vol. 6, pp. 99-108). Hong Kong: Office of Research, Faculty of Education, University of Hong Kong.