MOBILE TECHNOLOGY AS A POCKET EDUCATIONAL TOOL IN HIGHER EDUCATION

The development of smart devices has meant great technological changes and educational advances. Technologies have reached a greater role in teaching to provide new useful complementary support tools. In the case of this study, the students of Physical Activity and Sport Sciences Degree will implement a tool for acquisition of knowledge and analysis of technical skills. The use of mobile technology in classroom is still a subject that is much debated in teaching centers. However, using smartphones in classroom can have many advantages, but is necessary to teach how to use them, restricting the form, purpose and time of use. This requires an adaptation process to establish rules of use and to educate students to interpose in front of the fears of the educational community: level of attention, dispersion, inappropriate use... Recent studies have validated the use of different mobile applications for biomechanical analysis in sports disciplines. Actually, only a smartphone or tablet is necessary but recently, to carry out this type of analysis, high-cost instrumentation, equipment and platforms and difficult transportation were necessary. Finally, this study does not refer to mobile learning or educational methodologies that use mobile technology to teach at any time or place. Rather, the objective of this research is to demonstrate the effectiveness of the use of mobile phones as a tool in the classroom, offering additional benefits thanks to the visual feedback offered in the teaching-learning process of technical skills. The sample of the study is composed of sixty students of the first year of the Physical Activity and Sport Sciences Degree of the University of Alicante. Participants were randomly divided into a control group and an experimental group. For seven weeks, the control group learned technical gestures thanks to the teacher's instructions. Meanwhile, in the experimental group the students recorded themselves with smartphones when they did the practice to receive a feedback and a later visual analysis of how they were doing it. On the first day, the technical skills of the students were evaluated (Pre-test) and the same items were evaluated again after the seven weeks of implementation (Post-test) to check the improvement of each group. The results were analyzed with the statistical analysis software SPSS v.22, using the student's t test to compare the improvement between groups. Statistically significant differences were found (p<0.05) in the dexterity acquired between the control and experimental groups. The experimental group, which received feedback with visual technology, improved more than the control group, which only received verbal feedback. This study shows that the mobile technology can be used a useful tool to improve technical skills, as long as students are educated in correct use.