iBeacons for Learning

There’s new research Exploring Bluetooth Beacon Use Cases in Teaching and Learning: Increasing the Sustainability of Physical Learning Spaces that reviews selected use cases of Bluetooth beacons in educational situations.

The paper covers attendance monitoring, smart campus operation, dissemination of educational content to students and the use of augmented reality (AR) combined with beacons.

App iClassPolyU used for research

Read about Beacons in Education

Bluetooth Beacons in Higher Education

Sheffield Hallam University recently published a new paper by Kieran McDonald and Ian Glover on Exploring the transformative potential of Bluetooth.

The paper provides a great introduction to beacons and explores topics such as learning mediated through non-human agents and studio-based learning. It includes results of a study into how and where students prefer to work.

An ‘intervention’ as they call it, used beacons to provide more more timely information about the technical aspects of courses. This resulted in students feeling closer and more connected to tutors leading to increased efficiency and interaction.

There’s also an associated slideshare presentation by Ian Glover, one of the authors.

Beacons in Outdoor Learning Spaces

If you are working in learning, you might want to take a look at a new research paper Designing Outdoor Learning Spaces With iBeacons: Combining Place-Based Learning With the Internet of Learning Things (pdf). It takes a long time to download because it’s part of a compendium of research from the 12th International Conference of the Learning sciences.

The paper discusses place-based science learning in the context of an arboretum. It describes the use of beacons for informal learning, place-based learning, and context-sensitive educational technologies. Content was delivered in the arboretum with question prompts and activities so as to encourage deeper learning of plants

The paper says it has:

“insights into designing for learner-centered mobile computing that moves beyond presenting just-in-time information to creating digital-physical spaces where learners engage each other and natural objects to support their interests in science.”

“Beyond presenting just-in-time information” is an interesting aspect in that it can be just as applicable to other beacon usecases.