The Effects of Mobile Learning in an EFL Class on Self-Regulated Learning and School Achievement

The Effects of Mobile Learning in an EFL Class on Self-Regulated Learning and School Achievement

Tami Seifert (Kibutzim College of Education, Israel) and Carla Har-Paz (Kibbutzim College of Education, Israel)
Copyright: © 2020 |Pages: 17
DOI: 10.4018/IJMBL.2020070104
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The objective of this research was to find out whether the implementation of mobile learning pedagogies in a high school classroom can educate high school students to become independent learners, who are able to regulate their learning, improve their achievements. The findings have been analyzed by taking into consideration the self-regulation scales of motivation and learning strategies, together with the significance of the students' scores. The results of this study show that the implementation of a mobile learning teaching unit does not affect the self-regulation learning abilities of the students. However, it does reveal an increase in external and internal motivation together with a shift in the application of learning strategies. As a result, a two-stage model has been proposed aiming to educate teenagers to become agents of their learning while they practice mobile learning as well as implementation of mobile seamless learning to promote a self-regulated learning.
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1. Introduction

Most high school students nowadays do not learn to develop the ability to control and influence their own learning process. Skills, such as learning to set their goals, plan their course of action, monitor and assess its progress, which are important in the acquisition of Self-Regulated Learning (SRL) (Zimmerman, 2008), are not stressed in the traditional classroom. Nevertheless, self-regulated learning has become one of the most important skills in the modern world since the rapid changes generated by technology require individuals to be responsible for updating their knowledge constantly (Bandura, 2001).

Mobile learning (ML), designed appropriately, has the potential to facilitate the learner to generate and create their own learning contexts, since it simultaneously allows personalization and ubiquitous social connectedness (Cochrane & Bateman, 2009). ML in conjunction with the growth of knowledge provides an opportunity to democratize learning as the focus shifts from teacher generated content and context to student generated content and context (Valk, Rashid, & Elder, 2010). ML seems to have the potential to be a successful platform to foster self-regulated learning (SRL) in high school because it stimulates the learner to become the agent of their learning. In addition, the motivational factors fostered by the ownership of smartphones among teenagers can help promote the development of skills and knowledge that encourage SRL.

The researchers set out to understand whether there is a connection between the implementation of ML in a high school EFL classroom and the promotion of self-regulated learning, and student achievement.

For the purpose of this research, a curriculum-based ML teaching unit was designed by the teacher/researcher. Conceptual frameworks of ML were followed and issues concerning learning contexts, experiences and objectives were taken into consideration (Kearney et al., 2012). Puentedura’s (2014) SAMR model was used to create meaningful and enhancing ML activities

1.1. The Research Questions

  • 1.

    To what extent is there a difference in the acquisition of self-regulated skills between a group of 10th grade high school intermediate EFL students, who learned a curriculum-based teaching unit by means of ML, and a similar group of students who learned the same unit in a traditional way?

  • 2.

    Is there a difference in the students’ achievements in the literature program in the research group after they are taught the story “Thank you Ma’am” by Langston Hughes by means of a ML teaching unit created for this purpose?


2. Theoretical Background

This paper aims primarily to study whether EFL high school students, learning by means of a mobile learning unit, can acquire self-regulated learning skills, and whether their achievements in the instructed topic are positively affected by the implementation of mobile learning. This chapter reviews the theoretical background of the concepts inherent in self-regulated learning together with their respective models on one hand, and the theories of mobile learning (ML) and ML pedagogical frameworks on the other.

The construct of SRL is based on Bandura’s social cognitive theory which argues reciprocity between personal cognition (cognition, affect, and academic achievement) and behavioral and environmental factors (Bandura, 2001). The notion of human agency, which refers to the ability of individuals to control their thought, feeling and actions based on their self-beliefs (Bandura, 2001), is discussed as inherent not only to self-regulated learning, but to ML as well, since it is the learner who is mobile rather than the technology (Sharples, Taylor, & Vavoula, 2005).

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