QR Codes in mLearning: A New Kid on the Block

QR Codes in mLearning: A New Kid on the Block

Have you ever got the chance to take a look at this weird but effective black square grid in any paper documents or PDF files? Like barcodes, it has become a common thing which we can see very often. So, what are these QR codes? Do they have anything to do with mLearning?

What is a QR code?

The Wikipedia definition states that “A QR code or better known as Quick Response Code is a two dimensional matrix barcode which is used to store detailed information about a particular product in a digital medium”. It was first used in Japan. In the year 1994, Denso Wave Corporation, a subsidiary of Toyota, first used this code to track different automobile parts during manufacturing of a vehicle.

Why QR code is so popular?

Due to its faster readability and greater capacity to store data, it has wide acceptance in various industrial domains. Most importantly, it is standardized and can be easily read through machines. Thus, it can be used for multifarious purposes such as product tracking, product specification, time tracking, database management, marketing details and more. This embedded black and white format of the code has an error correction capability and can read the information from any direction.

What connection QR codes have with mLearning?

Imagine yourself travelling in a bus and you don’t have your laptop with you, but you have your smartphone. You want to know more details about a particular product and need to see some terminologies. What will you do?

Here is a 3-step quick solution for you:

  1. Install free QR code readers into your smartphone
  1. Scan the QR code from the respective document through your smartphone.
  1. View the additional information to supplement your knowledge on the product

Thus, QR codes benefit learners for Just-in-time learning and enable to boost their performance at one go. It is the best method to push information towards learners and then they can easily pull it in their learning process. Of late, in workplaces, it has become common to use QR codes as a scheme of BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) where employees can download their training requirements or requisite information. This application is available to aid as performance support.

Thus, these quirky codes can help learners in different ways. Say, for example, you want learners to take part in a fire-fighting drill program (a part of their safety program). They can collect all the moves and required safety information through their mobiles by scanning a “Tag” QR code.

A big thanks to these Japanese brains who have thought differently.  This simple but amazing technique has paved the way for learners to receive information anywhere and enable viewing instructional videos, user guidelines and so on.

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