1 Universidade Portucalense (PORTUGAL)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2016 Proceedings
Publication year: 2016
Pages: 6092-6099
ISBN: 978-84-608-5617-7
ISSN: 2340-1079
doi: 10.21125/inted.2016.0445
Conference name: 10th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 7-9 March, 2016
Location: Valencia, Spain
With the exponential growth of smart devices (mobile and wearable) in recent years and the combination of computing technologies with Internet connectivity has shifted from our offices and homes to our pockets. Now, experts are predicting that the devices that can be used in the body, or even inside the body, will be the next important step in this trend of more pervasive or even 'ubiquitous' computing – the idea that computer technology and the internet will be accessible anywhere, as an integral part of our ecosystem.

The projected revenues in 2013 were already 8 billion dollars, and the wearable technology market was incipient but promising because it is predicted that by 2017, revenues from these new devices will grow to 20 billion dollars. Similarly analysts from Morgan Stanley believe that wearable devices will have a far-reaching impact for disruption or even accelerate change in non-technological industries. In order to realize this growth rate, in November 2015 the database Vandrico Wearable Technologies ( included 347 wearable devices, while in April 2015 included 296.

The growing popularity of mobile networks has been one of the most important factors for the development of wearable technology. Bluetooth headphones, watches and smart glasses, and web-enabled glasses enable people to access data with the hands-free from Wi-Fi networks. In this context, the increasing uses of these technologies have led to an exponential increase in volume of data produced in all areas of activity. Mobile devices expose people to an immeasurable wealth of data and enable communication anywhere. In this context, organizations dedicated to the transaction of goods and services extract user profiles for an induction to buy goods and services, defending this approach with the indication of a more personalized service. This development also reached the area of education with the emergence, among others, the MOOCs with algorithms that analyze the student’s actions.

While it is difficult to establish the exact prevalence of wearable technologies in education, the limited literature in this area suggests that the possibilities of wearable technology is not being fully exploited in teaching-learning process (TLP), with the exception of the most used devices - Google Glass and Oculus Rift - that provide the user with audiovisual information to complement the perception of the world. However, one of the reasons that can be invoked for the low adoption of technology wearable to TLP is that the teachers have low perception of the potential that these technologies have.

This paper focuses on the presentation of the trends and challenges that wearable devices represent for education. For example, the definition of models or frameworks that through the large amount of data generated by students mobile devices, such as smartphones, tablets and wearable, detect patterns of behavior in learning in order to be able to produce custom profiles and resources to students. On the other hand, the most important challenges are the technical challenges, such as maintaining Internet access and operation of the interface, privacy issues related to the recording of video or images, the potential distraction of students, accommodation of the cost of this equipment as well as defining new pedagogical strategies for their adequate insertion in the TLP.