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"It must not disturb, it’s as simple as that": Students’ voices on mobile phones in the infrastructure for learning in Swedish upper secondary school

Journal article
Authors Torbjörn Ott
Anita Grigic Magusson
Alexandra Weilenmann
Ylva Hård af Segerstad
Published in Education and Information Technologies
Volume 23
Issue 1
Pages 517–536
ISSN 1360-2357
Publication year 2018
Published at Department of Applied Information Technology (GU)
Pages 517–536
Language en
Links doi.org/10.1007/s10639-017-9615-0
https://gup.ub.gu.se/file/207137
Keywords Mobile phones, Infrastructure for learning, Upper secondary school, Students’ perspective, Bring Your Own Device (BYOD)
Subject categories Educational Sciences

Abstract

Drawing from a survey and focus group interviews, this study explores how Swedish upper secondary students reason about the usage of their personal mobile phones in school. As a contribution to the debate around the mobile phone’s role in school, we present the students’ own voices relative to the question of regulating mobile phone use. We use the notion of infrastructure for learning (Guribye and Lindström 2009) to analytically approach the social and technological dimensions of the students’ narratives on their use of mobile phones in school practice. The students’ narratives present an intricate account of students’ awareness and concern of the implications of mobile phone presence in school. The students describe that the mobile phone is both a tool that facilitates their school work and a distraction that the teachers pursue. In school, the students are balancing their mobile phone usage with the teachers’ arbitrary enforcement of policy. Despite this process, the mobile phone is becoming a resource in the students’ infrastructure for learning. The findings from this study add to the limited body of research on the use of mobile phone in upper secondary school from a student perspective.

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