Using Mobile Phones To Assist Children’s Learning In Universeum

University essay from IT-universitetet i Göteborg/Tillämpad informationsteknologi

Author: Rui Zhang; [2009-06-29T09:25:44Z]

Keywords: Children; mobile phones; museum; photo; camera phone; interaction; mobile game;

Abstract: This master thesis study explores how to assist children’s learning using mobile phones in Universeum located in Gothenburg, Sweden. Universeum is the largest Science center in Scandinavia where children can learn the ocean, explore rainforest and discover space. From the field study carried out firstly in Universeum, some findings are gained, for example children prefer to discuss and share their findings with their friends, classmates or family members; children use body gestures to describe some animals; children are interested in big and colorful animals; children would like to capture some photos using their mobile phones and share their photos with others; children are interested in viewing photos captured by others. A system, which includes a mobile application and a web portal, is designed based on the review of the related work and the data from the field study. A prototype of the mobile applications is built and named Fotofiske which includes some information of exhibitions in Universeum and children can take photos using their mobile phones to match specific exhibitions’ information. Finally from a small evaluation of this prototype in Universeum, there are some findings about how to improve this prototype and deploy it at Universeum. For example children think that Fotofiske is interesting and fun. It is better to publish the Fotofiske game at the Univereum web site and let children freely download it before visiting. From this study, it reveals children can use mobile phones to gain knowledge at Universeum. The mobile prototype enables children to learn in a more interesting and interactive way at Universeum.

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