The Challenges of Adopting M-Learning Assistive Technologies for Visually Impaired Learners in Higher Learning Institution in Tanzania

Kamaghe, Juliana Samuel and Luhanga, Edith Talina and Kisangiri, Michael (2020) The Challenges of Adopting M-Learning Assistive Technologies for Visually Impaired Learners in Higher Learning Institution in Tanzania. International Journal of Emerging Technologies in Learning (iJET), 15 (1). pp. 140-151. ISSN 1863-0383

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In the past decades, the world has experienced major changes in the advancement of learning technologies which has enabled learners to engage in their learning activities anywhere. The penetration of mobile phone internet users in Tanzania has been increasing from 2 million in 2011 to 23mil in 2017 The adoption of mobile-based learning (M-learning) for students who are visually impaired in Tanzania has become a major bottleneck since most of the e-learning contents assume that learners have sight and thus include a lot of visualizations. This causes visually impaired students in higher learning Institutions (HLIs) to face challenges such as technical knowledge gaps. Lack of skills and inaccessibility of online contents, which then lead to drop out of the university. The aim of this study is to determine the awareness and usage levels of existing mobile assistive technologies for visual impairment, and the remaining challenges that visually impaired students face, when using such tools on smartphones to access m-learning content from HLIs. in Tanzania. The research was conducted an observational and contextual inquiry study at three major HLIs. We found that 67% of respondents did not have knowledge of m-learning assistive technologies, and their technology barriers for visually impaired students. Also, knowledge, accessibility of Assistive technology and affordability can hinder the adoption of m-learning in Higher Learning Institutions

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This study describes the use of assistive technologies in mobile learning among students with visual impairments in Tanzania. Moodle is widely used in higher education institutions in Tanzania. The study concluded that while Moodle itself provides accessibility support, and many mobile devices provide assistive technology such as text-to-voice, many institutions have not enabled Moodle Mobile, and course content often lacks appropriate support for assistive technologies (e.g. alternative text for images). Additionally, few learners were aware of how to use mobile learning features to improve accessibility, indicating a need for student orientation to these services.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Moodle, Assistive technologies, Higher Learning Institutions, M-learning, Mobile devices, Visual impairment
Subjects: Educational technology > Accessibility
Educational technology > Mobile learning
Education (General) > Higher education
Depositing User: Elizabeth Dalton
Date Deposited: 31 Jan 2020 19:20
Last Modified: 31 Jan 2020 19:20

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