Educational usage of mobile devices : differences between postgraduate and undergraduate students

Ka Po LAU, K. W., Dickson CHIU, K. W., Kevin HO, Patrick LO, Wing Kuen, Eric SEE-TO

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)peer-review

53 Citations (Scopus)


The rapid increase of smartphone usage in recent years has provided students the opportunity to participate in mobile learning (m-learning) anywhere, anytime. Academic institutions are also following this trend to launch many m-learning services. This article investigates the differences of the user needs between undergraduate (UG) and postgraduate (PG) students though an online survey with 140 Library Information Systems (LIS) subjects in a Japanese university in order to provide solid foundations for future m-learning studies. We find that UG and PG students do not show significant differences in adopting m-learning by smartphones despite the fact that they have different learning patterns. The m-learning frequencies of smartphones generally range from weekly to monthly, where using search engines is the most frequent, and reading academic resources is the least frequent. They tend to use these services for handling their daily routines (such as search engine, social networks) rather than their academic activities (such as using online databases to search for academic materials). Further, the results also show that content displaying issues (e.g., small display screen, text unable to enlarge) are barriers for most subjects in using these m-learning services.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)201-208
Number of pages8
JournalThe Journal of Academic Librarianship
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2017


  • Comparison
  • Learning patterns
  • Library and Information Science (LIS)
  • Mixed method
  • Mobile learning (m-learning)
  • Smartphone


Dive into the research topics of 'Educational usage of mobile devices : differences between postgraduate and undergraduate students'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this