Research

Survey: Adaptive Learning Tools Most Effective Ed Tech

Four out of five, 81 percent, of higher ed students used mobile devices in 2014, up 40 percent over 2013, according to a new survey from McGraw-Hill Education. Comprising smartphones and tablets, mobile devices were the second-most used among respondents behind laptops.

Students surveyed also said that adaptive learning tools were the most effective learning technology available, with 85 percent reporting that they helped with a moderate to major improvement in their grades.

Other key findings of the survey include:

  • 66 percent of respondents said it is moderately or extremely important to be able to study on a mobile device;
  • More than three quarters, 77 percent, of surveyed students said technology had positively affected their grades;
  • 48 percent of students said that technology saves them time when studying, with 77 percent of those students reporting that it saves them at least two to five hours a week;
  • 62 percent of respondents told researchers that technology helps them feel better prepared and 52 percent said it helps them feel more confident about their course material knowledge; and
  • 79 percent of students said study tools should be as tailored to individuals as social media feeds and nearly as many, 72 percent, said they should be more personalized than they currently are.

"The rise of studying via mobile isn't simply due to the ubiquity of smartphones and tablets on campus, it's a case of mobile suiting the way students study now," said Sharon Loeb, vice president of marketing for McGraw-Hill Education, Higher Ed, in a prepared statement "The feedback we've received from students and instructors suggests that today's students tend toward shorter, more concentrated bursts of studying anywhere they're able, rather than waiting for several hours to hunker down in the library. We expect the growth in mobile use among college students to continue for the next five years, which means institutions will need to adapt their infrastructure and faculty will want to consider ways to incorporate mobile learning into their courses."

About the Author

Joshua Bolkan is contributing editor for Campus Technology, THE Journal and STEAM Universe. He can be reached at jbolkan@gmail.com.

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