23 January 2014
23 January 2014,

Standards have played an important role in the evolution of technology and, more specifically, the Internet. As the ubiquity of mobile devices continues to grow, so does the opportunity to leverage their portability and connectivity for learning. An evolution of various standards has unfolded to support the use of mobile devices in our daily lives. The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) has published practices on mobile Web best practices and content transformation. Other practices, such as responsive Web design (RWD), allow designers the opportunity to consider the broader implications of interface design in the context of all types of display formats. While most of the standards serve to support device connectivity, communication and transport, a small number are directly related to learning and content. As we move forward, the de facto Web standard HTML, with roots in formatting typesetting, and the eLearning specification, the Sharable Content Object Reference Model (SCORM) that is rooted in tracking content in the browser, provide two points of departure for the future development of mobile learning (mLearning). HTML5 (the new version of HTML) and the Experience API (the successor to the SCORM) are defining a base from which content development, delivery and tracking can be better defined for mLearning. Furthermore, HTML5 is currently proliferating in the marketplace while the Experience API is evolving as a formal specification published as a 1.0. In concert, they will provide the community with the necessary capabilities to further mLearning. Standards already in existence should begin to have a greater effect on mLearning. Standards related to near field communications (NFC) will likely support more use cases in mLearning as the number of devices and amount of demand for mLearning continue to grow. Additionally, concepts like the ‘Internet of things’ 18 (IOT) should evolve into complimentary standards and specifications that will connect learning, mobile devices and the world around us. [Author abstract]