Role of the Cell Phone in Education

                   By Mahjabeen Malik

The use of cell phone is ubiquitous, especially among young generation/students. A question arises, naturally, whether we should allow students to use a mobile phone or not?  According to Some Australian researchers and educationists, as we are living in the era of modern technology we need to learn the use of technology instead of banning its use or keeping our children away from widespread technology. The students of today are the children of technology’s world, and keeping them away from the usage of the cell phone, clearly, means to keep them in previous century or making them blind to see this modern world of technology. In other words, it can be considered to develop an unskilled generation”. Today, on the suggestion of a university student, I am writing my article on this particular topic ‘Role of the Cell Phone in Education”. So obviously I’ll have to write its usage and merits as well as demerits for the students of university. But preferably, first, I’ll introduce the role of the cell phone, in the eyes of researchers, in school and college education, both formal and informal.

 Role of the Cell Phone in School and College

In recent time, the gadget of the cell phone has become part and parcel of everyone’s life. Now the mobile phone has turned into media. It provides us with all types of national and international information, entertainment programs, musical shows, and games, political and religious programmes. We can easily make videos, record events or personal talk and capture events through the camera in mobile. A decade back, the cell phone was considered to be a source of communication, making and receiving calls but now it has developed dramatically. It is used for various purposes. Cell phone gadget is a portable device which can be easily used anywhere at any time. This gadget provides assistance to students in learning. As for example they can use calculators, consult dictionary stored in mobile. But despite this, students at school and college level should not be allowed to possess a cell phone. The main reason is the immaturity of their cognitive. In tender age, they do not use their gadget only for a positive purpose. Cyberbullying is the dilemma of our time. So to save our students from cyberbullying, the cell phones must be banned for the school & college students.

Use of the cell phones by school students banned

  Usually, students of government schools don’t possess the cell phones. In case someone is found using a mobile phone in the class, he/she is admonished by the teachers. While the situation in private especially elite sector of education is entirely dissimilar. Students possess expensive set of cell phones. They use their cell phones secretly during class time for texting messages to their friends and lose attention in the class lesson. And in the break time, they use mobile phone for watching videos and playing games. No doubt cell phone can play a positive role at school and college level. Regretfully, students do not get any benefit instead of that they waste their time playing games and watching obnoxious videos, texting messages to their friends and dialing unknown numbers for teasing purposes. There in only a few positive roles of the cell phone at school and college level. The disadvantages of cell phones dominate the advantages.  

 Use of the mobile phones by teachers banned

The school teachers waste their time on mobile phones during school hours. The government of Pakistan bans the use of cell phone at school and college level. The best decision has been taken by the school administration of Rawalpindi in 2014, aftermath the teachers violated the school’s principles and they were found using the cell phone in the classrooms and everywhere in the school premises. The education department has banned use of cell phones in schools, creating problems for the students. The head teachers and principals direct to collect mobile phones from all teachers in the morning assembly and return them at the end of school hours to ensure the implementation of the ban. Being a teacher I myself have observed many of my colleagues using an unnecessary cell phone. Teachers (spiritual parents) themselves indulge in taking selfies and making tick talk and then uploading their status on WhatsApp. The use of cell phone by teachers banned is really a praiseworthy decision taken by EDO Education Zahoor ul Haq. In case of violating the ban, teachers will have to be suspended.

Role of the Cell Phone in University Education

Motility and mobility of wireless connectivity are the two main reasons for the recognition of mobile devices.  The users feel free to communicate anywhere while travelling by conveyance or walking on foot. In the era of tense competition, the manufacturers are trying to introduce latest and innovative cell phone devices in the market.

The users are thoroughly familiar with the use of mobile devices including smartphones, MP3 players, PDAs and iPods. Mobile phones are cheaper than desktop computers or laptops everyone can easily purchase and get access to the internet. It is a low-cost learning and teaching gadget. It has appeared as a useful medium to extend the reach of the Internet.

A vast majority of mobile operators have offered 3G and 4G services for improvements in the speed and ease of data transfer over the Internet. Through it m-learning has become flexible and exciting for the university students. Mobile learning can be defined as learning through a mobile device.

 University students can carry knowledge along with them everywhere in the shape of the mobile device and they can interact with classmates and teachers as well.

The students can capture any event or activity related to their courses, which can be very helpful in connecting their previous knowledge with reality and clarifying different misconceptions about a particular topic. Although m-learning is not new yet the governments, educators, and commercial enterprises have started taking a serious interest in it recently. The widespread adoption of mobile phones among university students is the main motivation behind this study.

 We cannot ignore the services of this small gadget at any rate. Through the use of the mobile phone (m-learning) we can teach advance learning to the teachers. Teachers from villages cannot attend classes held in the prime cities of the country, thus they deprive of quality education. Luckily, the cell phone has resolved their problem. Now they can learn vocabulary with actual pronunciation and can prepare a good and advanced lesson plan for the class by attending workshops on the cell phone. In the light of researchers, educators and my own close observation I request the government to pay her full attention to the use of on this technology. It can become a greater source of spreading education around the country. Deprived people of Pakistan living in villages can listen to the lectures of highly qualified professors of PhD level on mobile.  The government can spread quality education through distance learning programmes. University student should be equipped with modern device cellphone to benefit from it. The role of the cell in the field of education is unparalleled