Notice to Authors

Due to the overwhelming number of submissions to IRRODL, the journal has already met its publication quota for 2019. As a result, for a period that will not exceed six months, IRRODL will no longer be accepting submissions after May 1, 2019. In order to improve our service to the academic community, and to ensure a six month review to publication cycle, IRRODL will be moving to a regularized publication schedule in 2020. More information will be provided later this year.

We thank our authors, reviewers, and readers for their unwavering and exceptional support in making our journal one of the world’s most successful, open access journals in the field of open and distributed learning.

The Inherent Tensions of “Instant Education”: A Critical Review of Mobile Instant Messaging

  • Christoph Pimmer University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland FHNW Institute for Information Systems
  • Patient Rambe University of the Free State
Keywords: instant messaging, mobile instant messaging, educational technology, mobile learning, social media, dialectical theory

Abstract

This paper critically reviews literature on the role of Mobile Instant Messaging (MIM) applications, such as WhatsApp, in supporting learning and teaching practice. Using formal qualitative synthesis as its methodology, and dialectical theory as an analytical framework, our main objective was to identify tensions, affordances, constraints, and resolution strategies in educational uses of MIM. In contrast to prior work, the analysis offers a nuanced and complex picture of the use of MIM in learning and teaching settings. Instead of facilitating the creation of educational outcomes in a straightforward manner, the realities of MIM use are socially constructed and the subject of conflictual negotiations. The educational use of MIM requires users to navigate the interdependent dialectical tensions of immediacy versus delays (temporal dimension), intimacy versus detachment (relationship dimension) and task versus ludic orientation (intellectual dimension). The findings also reveal a number of behavioural and technical resolution strategies that users deploy to manage these tensions.

Published
2018-11-27
How to Cite
Pimmer, C., & Rambe, P. (2018). The Inherent Tensions of “Instant Education”: A Critical Review of Mobile Instant Messaging. The International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 19(5). https://doi.org/10.19173/irrodl.v19i5.3765
Section
Research Articles