A VLE with responsive design gives students and faculty a user-friendly experience from any device.
Do you remember the frustration of visiting a website on your smartphone that wasn’t designed for mobile? How excited were you to pinch and zoom to find the information or button that you were looking for? Now multiply that times a thousand. Because when students are trying to access course material, it’s all too easy to fall into the trap of frustration, leading to learning fatigue, and ultimately, disengagement from their course. A higher education VLE with responsive design ensures that students can access their course content, feedback from lecturers, in a convenient visual design. And this design will have the same look and functionality on any device, whether it’s a smartphone, tablet and more.
The quality of the mobile experience students have when using your VLE can be as instrumental in student engagement as the quality of your educators and course offerings. Why? Because your students are spending more of their time on mobile devices than ever before. They expect a seamless experience and want what they want, when they want it. And just because they can access your virtual learning environment, doesn’t mean they are fully connecting with content due to a technological barrier.
Higher education VLE accessible from any device
How students view and work with a course document is hugely important to their studies. Content needs to be easy to read, with simple navigation, otherwise there is a risk that a student will become disengaged from their course material. Having a higher education VLE with responsive design means course content has the same modern, consistent appearance on any device. This is similar to the convenient way in which smartphone apps allow easy access to all the same features found on a desktop web browser.
Mobile and desktop functionality should match
There are some definite advantages to having a VLE with mobile optimisation versus a native app. A native application for a VLE can tend to have less functionality due to the resources required to build and maintain these functions for each different device. Development is slower because of the breadth of labour required to maintain each version. Students, therefore, might not be getting the most from their mobile experience. Native apps are great at doing one thing really well. But when it comes to the overall course content, teacher feedback, accessing video and other materials, students need to be able to access all content in an easy to use and engaging way. This type of mobile user experience makes ordering a pizza incredibly easy and quick. The same is true for course content. This is why it’s essential for a higher education VLE to provide the same functionality on all devices. Better mobile accessibility enables equal access to learning for all students.
Course building for the mobile environment
Not only students, but also lecturers expect decent mobile functionality. Using a VLE with responsive design allows teachers to build courses, quizzes, insert pictures, video on one device, and then be sure that it will have a consistent look and feel on another device. Not only should building courses be seamless, but running them should also be easy. Lecturers save time by having quick access to their student’s work and the ability to interact with students and their course work whenever and wherever they want.
When a higher education VLE uses responsive design, updates and new functionality can be pushed out in a single instance. Unlike the inevitable delay when developers are required to implement new functionality for each device. This is definitely something to consider if you’re hoping to offer a quality mobile experience. Unless you miss the days of pinch and zoom. Watch this short video for an overview of an VLE that features responsive design and see why students will love engaging with content in a more meaningful way.