The Community for Technology Leaders



Pages: pp. 1-3

Dear Readers,

This issue focuses on another important group of learning technologies: mobile learning technologies. A dramatic increase in the volume of various mobile devices and their computational power over the last few years has turned them into a popular learning platform. This emerging platform differs from traditional desktop-based learning in many aspects and has encouraged many researchers in educational technology to explore the power of this platform and discover the most useful and effective ways of mobile learning. This special issue, which was edited by Michael Sharples and Jeremy Roschelle, recognizes authorities in this rapidly expanding field and presents a state-of-the-art snapshot of mobile learning technologies. We hope that it will be of interest to many researchers and practitioners.

Wolfgang Nejdl, Editor-in-Chief

Peter Brusilovsky, Associate Editor-in-Chief

About the Authors

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Mordechai (Moti) Ben-Ari received the PhD degree in mathematics and computer science from Tel Aviv University. He is an associate professor in the Department of Science Teaching at the Weizmann Institute of Science, where he heads a group that develops courses in computer science (CS) for high school students, builds software tools for teaching CS, and carries out research in CS education. He is the author of numerous textbooks, most recently, Just a Theory: Exploring the Nature of Science (Prometheus, 2005), Principles of Concurrent and Distributed Computation (Addison-Wesley, 2006), Principles of the Spin Model Checker (Springer, 2008), and Ada for Software Engineers (Springer, 2009). His group, in collaboration with a group at the University of Joensuu, Finland, developed the Jeliot program animation system, which was a finalist for the 2007 Premier Award for Excellence in Engineering Education Courseware. Professor Ben-Ari is on the editorial boards of four journals relating to CS education. In 2004, he received the ACM/SIGCSE Award for Outstanding Contributions to Computer Science Education, and in 2009, was elected as a Distinguished Educator by the ACM.
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Hugh Davis is a professor of technology-enhanced learning at the University of Southampton, where he heads the Learning Societies Lab (LSL) in the School of Electronics and Computer Science. He is also the University Director of Education with the responsibility for technology-enhanced learning. He has been involved in hypertext research since the late 1980s and has interests in the applications of hypertext for learning, open hypertext systems, and architectures for adaptation and personalization. He has more than 200 publications in these fields, and the experience of starting a spin-off company with a hypertext product. His recent research interests revolve around Web and Grid service frameworks for e-learning and he has a particular focus on the assessment domain. He has led many funded projects focusing on both the technology and application of educational technology. He is a member of the British Computer Society, a chartered IT Professional, a fellow of the Higher Education Academy, and a professional member of the ACM.
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Baltasar Fernández-Manjón received the bachelor’s degree in physics (with a major in computer science) and the PhD degree in physics from the Complutense University of Madrid (UCM). He is an associate professor in the Department of Software Engineering and Artificial Intelligence (DISIA) at UCM. He coleads the Complutense e-learning research group e-UCM ( His main research interests are in e-learning technologies, educational uses of markup technologies, educational uses of serious games, and the application of educational standards and user modeling, on which he has published more than 90 research papers. He is a senior member of the IEEE, a member of the Working Group 3.3 Research on the Educational Uses of Communication and Information Technologies of the International Federation for Information Processing (IFIP), and a member of the Spanish Technical Committee for e-Learning Standardization (AENOR CTN71/SC36 “Tecnologías de la información para el aprendizaje”).
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Denis Gillet is an associate professor (MER) of engineering at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne (EPFL), where he received the PhD degree in information systems in 1995. His research interests include technology-enhanced learning, human-computer interaction (HCI), engineering education, and hierarchical control of distributed systems. His pioneer work on collaborative remote experimentation earned him the 2001 Recognition Award for Innovations and Accomplishments in Distance and Flexible Learning Methodologies for Engineering Education granted by the International Network for Engineering Education and Research (iNEER). His current research focus is on personal learning environments and contextual recommender systems with applications to online engineering education and knowledge management. Dr. Gillet is an executive of the STELLAR European Network of Excellence on Technology-Enhanced Learning. He also holds a leading position in the ROLE European Integrated Project on Responsive Open Learning Environments.
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Ralf Klamma received a diploma degree in 1995 and the doctoral degree in 2000, both in computer science from RWTH Aachen University. Currently, he leads the research group Metadata in Community Information Systems as the information systems chair at RWTH Aachen University. His research covers information systems theory, the application of information systems in engineering, cultural sciences, and virtual communities, social software, social network analysis, technology-enhanced learning, geographic information systems, cultural heritage management, and new product development. He is the technical leader and community facilitator of the EU IP ROLE (Responsive Open Learning Environments) and a member of the Aachen research cluster Ultra High Speed Mobile Information and Communication (UMIC). He was a visiting fellow at the MIT Entrepreneurship Center in the Sloan School of Management, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and had stand-in professorships at Chemnitz University, Germany, and Passau University, Germany. He is the editor-in-chief of the Central European Information Server SunSITE CEUR, the PROLEARN Academy, and the Multimedia Metadata Community. He serves as an associate editor for international journals like the International Journal of Applied Systemic Studies, the International Journal of Technology Enhanced Learning, and the International Journal of Social and Humanistic Computing. He has more than 120 refereed publications in journals, conference proceedings, and edited books, and has edited many conference and workshop proceedings. He is a reviewer for journals like Communications of the ACM, IEEE Multimedia, the IEEE Transactions on Knowledge and Data Engineering, IEEE Internet Computing, and Information Systems and Information Systems Frontiers, and conferences including ICIS, ECIS, CAiSE, CHI, EC-TEL, ACM GROUP, ACM Hypertext, CSCL, and others. He is a member of the German Informatics Society (GI-29676).
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Rynson Lau received the BSc degree from the University of Kent and the PhD degree from the University of Cambridge. He has been on the faculty of Durham University, the City University of Hong Kong, and The Hong Kong Polytechnic University. He has served as the guest editor of a number of journal special issues, including IEEE Internet Computing, ACM Tranactions on Internet Technology, IEEE Transactions on Multimedia, IEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics, and IEEE Computer Graphics & Applications. In addition, he has also served on the committees of a number of conferences, including program cochair of ACM VRST 2004, ICWL 2005, ICAT 2006, ICEC 2007, ACM MTDL 2009, and U-Media 2009 and conference cochair of CASA 2005, ACM VRST 2005, ICWL 2007, IDET 2008, and ACM MDI 2009. His research interests include distributed virtual environments and multimedia learning technologies.
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Mike Sharples studied computational science at St. Andrews University and received the PhD degree in artificial intelligence from the University of Edinburgh. He is Professor of Learning Sciences and the director of the Learning Sciences Research Institute at the University of Nottingham. From 1984 to 1997, he held a lecturing post in the School of Cognitive and Computing Sciences at the University of Sussex, and until 2003, was the Kodak Royal Academy of Engineering Research Professor of Educational Technology at the University of Birmingham. He has been engaged in research into technology-enhanced learning for over 30 years and his current focus is on the design of mobile and contextual technologies for learning. He inaugurated the mLearn conference series and is president of the International Association for Mobile Learning. As Deputy Scientific Manager of the Kaleidoscope Network of Excellence in Technology-Enhanced Learning from 2006-2007, he coordinated a network of 1,100 researchers across 90 European research centers. He is the author of more than 170 publications in the areas of interactive systems design, artificial intelligence, and educational technology.
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Amy Soller received the BS degree in electrical engineering from Boston University and the MS and PhD degrees in intelligent systems from the University of Pittsburgh. Her interests include artificial intelligence, collaborative learning, and human-computer interaction. She has worked as an advanced learning technology consultant for the University of California, Los Angeles, a knowledge management project manager at the Institute for Research in Science and Technology in Italy, and a senior artificial intelligence engineer at the MITRE Corporation. She sits on a number of editorial and scientific advisory boards, coedited a textbook on advanced collaborative technology, and has published more than 50 peer reviewed articles.
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