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Do you have a mobile device, but aren’t sure how to use it in the classroom? The CTL is here to help! We understand difference audiences use mobile devices in unique ways, and we are here to help you determine what will work for you.

What is Mobile Learning?

Mobile learning is an extension of classroom or online learning that considers how students and faculty use mobile devices (smartphones/tablets) to participate in educational communities. The proliferation of these devices is largely driving the trend toward mobile learning. Unlike computers, our mobile devices are often at hand throughout the day, providing a rapid ability to access educational content, creative apps and tools to complete tasks, and the ability to communicate rapidly with others.

Visit our Recommended Apps page to find some mobile-friendly tools for your course.


The Center for Teaching and Learning will be offering two workshops each semester on Mobile Learning. The first topic is Projecting From Your iPad to an Apple TV and Other Ways to Use Your iPad in Class". In the session, faculty will get hands-on experience with using their devices for teaching and academic purposes.

Using Mobile Devices in Teaching

Below is a list of UMSL faculty who have designed classroom or online activities that use mobile devices.

Qiang Dotzel


Educreations is an iPad whiteboard application that allows users to make screen-recordings and then share them via a weblink to others. Qiang, a mathematics/CS instructor, uses the app to record herself working math equations along with her voice. After she's made a recording, she can easily post the link to watch it in MyGateway. Educreations is only available on iOS.

Steven Phipps Keynote
Jennifer Reynolds-Moehrle

Airsketch Free

In Jennifer Reynolds-Moehrle's accounting course, students can show off their knowledge for the class without even leaving their chair. Airsketch Free is a wireless projection app that allows Jennifer to move around the room while projecting a virtual whiteboard from her iPad via the Apple TV system in many of the UMSL classrooms. Students can work problems, circle important parts of a company's income statement, and much more. Additionally, Jennifer lets students use their mobile devices to bring in topic-relevant content to the class session in real-time (ex. stock quotes, news articles). Airsketch Free is only available on iOS.

Brian Speicher

CamScanner Pro (or alternative)

Brian wanted to be able to see his students' statistics work in the online course he teaches at UMSL. To make it easier for students to submit their problems, he has students upload scans of their work that are taken from their mobile device. This removes the need for them to use a scanner on campus. With an app like CamScanner Pro or another alternative, students can use the camera on their device to snap a picture of their homework and upload it to MyGateway. The app automatically flattens the page, adjusts the contrast for maximum clarity, and saves the file as a PDF. The app is available for Android and iOS.

Terry Thiel

Explain Everything

Since Terry teaches a biology course in a blended format, the time she has to meet with students in face-to-face is limited. To maximize her class time, Terry uses the Explain Everything app--a recordable whiteboard--to have her students watch her lectures in advance of the in-person class session. The app allows her the same flexibility as drawing on a whiteboard in class, but it has a much clearer picture and, since it's recorded, students can rewind and rewatch concepts that are more difficult to understand. Terry uses Explain Everything to draw carbon atoms, DNA, and more. It even allows image and documents to be uploaded to the virtual whiteboard. The app is available on Android and iOS.

Susan Waller


Socrative is a real-time polling application that uses mobile devices to get instant feedback from students. Susan can open a poll on the projector in the classroom and students can answer it and see the collective responses of their peers immediately. There's even a web app for students without a mobile device. The app can be used as a voting platform or as a quick formative assessment tool to gauge student understanding or as an attendance quiz. The app is available on Android and iOS.