The SALSA project has grown from a number of different research strands in the Open University. A direct connection comes from our participation in the EU funded MASELTOV project, exploring how smartphones can be used to support social inclusion and language learning for recent immigrants. The Open University team, providing educational input into MASELTOV, have explored incidental learning: encouraging our target learners to consider their daily lives and activities as a rich resource for triggering learning. However, using smartphones for learning brings with it challenges, not least the assumption by some software developers that their applications will always have an internet connection. We wrote a paper about the benefits of incidental learning on smartphones and some of the challenges it faced in 2012, and suggested that a smart city might be the place to maximise the benefits of this innovative approach to teaching and learning. Here’s a link to that paper: “A citizen-centred approach to education in the smart city: incidental language learning for supporting the inclusion of recent migrants”.
As you might imagine, we were delighted when we saw the Open Challenge project call asking for research proposals which build on the capability being developed in MK:Smart.
Gaved, Mark; Jones, Ann; Kukulska-Hulme, Agnes and Scanlon, Eileen (2012). A citizen-centred approach to education in the smart city: incidental language learning for supporting the inclusion of recent migrants. International Journal of Digital Literacy and Digital Competence, 3(4) pp. 50–64.