Flexible Learning is a set of educational philosophies and systems, concerned with providing learners with increased choice, convenience, and personalisation to suit the learner. In particular, flexible learning provides learners with choices about where, when, and how learning occurs. Sometimes also referred to as personalized learning. Flexible learning is a term often used in New Zealand and Australia see Shurville et al. (2008)
Flexible learning approaches are often designed using a full range of teaching and learning theories, philosophies and methods to provide students with opportunities to access information and expertise, contribute ideas and opinions, and correspond with other learners and mentors. This may occur through the use of internet-based tools such as Virtual Learning Environments (VLEs) or Learning Management Systems (LMSes), discussion boards or chat rooms; and may be designed as a "blended" approach, with content available electronically and remotely, as well as "face-to-face" classroom tutorials and lectures.
While the majority of flexible learning programs to date have taken advantage of computer-based systems ("E-learning"), the rapidly increase in the processing power and popularity of mobile digital devices has recently caused considerable interest in mobile learning - the use of mobile devices such as mobile phones, iPods, and Personal Digital Assistants (PDAs) to increase the mobility of learners and correspondingly enhance the flexibility of their learning.
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