Mobile Learning and Microlearning: eLearning Software Upgrades

February 04, 2022 • 748 Views • 12 min read

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Bohdan Vasylkiv

CEO & Co-Founder

The rapid growth of app development causes a huge influence on the way users react to the offered functionalities. People strive to have even more convenient features in each app they use, and even more satisfying forms of content. Thus, such an escalation in improving user experience lead to the development of the eLearning industry as well. Various forms of online education appeared on the market, changing the way people learn and share knowledge. The online education market now is full of multiple options of different Online Tutoring Platforms, Massive Open Online Courses, Learning Experience Systems, and many others.

Read also: Rise Variety of Online Learning Platforms: Best Ideas Review

But besides mentioned above services, emerged the upsurge of two more learning approaches, highly popular among learners: Mobile learning (mLearning) and Microlearning. Sometimes people might misinterpret the abbreviation mLearning with Microlearning, but these are completely different concepts. Below we’ll take a closer look at those two learning approaches in order to figure out what’s the difference and how they possibly might cooperate in one eLearning Software. Now, let’s start exploring.

What is mLearning?

Learners can use a phone or tablet to browse an eLearning platform or engage with an app through mobile learning. This learning approach’s goal is to help eLearning material available.

However many mobile learning platforms incorporate social learning by integrating their app to social media or by creating a web network so participants may discuss their performance with one another.

Mobile learning delivers contextual material, or content that is just in time, just enough, and designed specifically for the end-user. This method of learning provides users with the relevant information at the right moment, allowing them to address knowledge gaps and execute their tasks more efficiently. The main focus here goes to the word ‘mobile’, not as the device we are all using every day, but as ‘mobility’. This word is representing accessibility (the main concept of mLearning), which is actually can be given with mobile phones’ usage. So, the connection obviously exists. In this context, a mobile learner is someone who uses his/her phone ‘on the go’, before or after using the laptop as the main device. We believe that having a mobile-first perspective is essential for success, however, it is necessary to think regarding online education in a device-agnostic manner.

Benefits of Mobile Learning

  • Quick Accessibility to the Educational Materials. Mobile learning provides education and access to education materials when necessary. If an issue arises, your workers may use their smartphones to look for a solution, which is a more fast and convenient method.

  • Let Learners Absorb More Information. Mobile learning enables the quick, convenient, and repeating usage of course materials for better remembering. Some mLearning systems also counteract skill atrophy with gamified updates and microlearning increases on a regular basis.

  • Boost Average Length of Learning. Because mobile learning allows students to develop wherever and whenever they choose during the everyday routine, they might study extra. But to make it happen, you need to create an engaging format of learning, so it would be an entertaining way to spend some free time throughout the day.

Drawbacks of Mobile Learning

  • Extra expenses on development. It can be costly in terms of both time and money to execute. The investment is increased by development across numerous devices, as well as the acquisition of smartphones to support it. We have already explored the estimated average cost and time spent on the creation of an app with basic features in our Incora Blog, and we described there that the adjustment to each operating system and device will need more time. As you can understand, in development the time equals money, so it’s going to be less cost-effective than building a web platform, fit for different laptops. Furthermore, the generation of mobile-exclusive content will require far more money and effort.

What is MicroLearning?

Microlearning is knowledge supplied in manageable and hyper-relevant bits at precisely the correct time. It is an eLearning method that allows learners to assimilate material in separated chunks in a profoundly interactive and collaborative manner. The concept involves allowing learners to guide their own learning by offering small doses of supersaturated material.

However, microlearning is not really a modern phenomenon. Microlearning has typically been utilized for part of a more advanced mixed training program, integrating face-to-face education with microlearning for followup and encouragement.

According to recent research, brief material can boost knowledge retention by 20%. Study has demonstrated that people remember more if we learn in short concentrated spurts rather than sitting during hour-long sessions.

Some of the concrete examples of microlearning that will let you comprehend microlearning concepts include short tutorial YouTube videos, flashcard studying (programs that offer the student with flashcards on specific material to assist in memorizing), brief training quizzes, and getting little pieces of information by message (for example, sending you a new word hourly or daily).

Advantages of MicroLearning

  • Deliberate learning. Microlearning takes to use in small periods of time. It eliminates superfluous or unneeded text while emphasizing the information that is critical. This avoids overloading learners while also increasing their capacity to absorb and remember knowledge.

  • Focuses on just-in-time learning. Learning is now available on demand and at the point of need. When learners are ready, they can proceed at their own speed.

  • Keeps students interested. It comes in a variety of forms, allowing for a variety of learning experiences while also raising student engagement. More significantly, those many varieties are jam-packed with engagements and media content that grab and retain learners’ attention every few minutes.

  • Inexpensive. Microlearning, because of its short length, necessitates lower time and resources for preparation and delivery. As a result, the development cycle is shortened and development costs are reduced.

Disadvantages of MicroLearning

  • Incompatible with sophisticated operations. Microlearning is intended for concepts and actions that are easily consumable on a “micro” scale. It attempts to provide immediate and efficient online learning that is geared to heavy workloads.

  • It might become a content snippet. It may be tough to join the parts or locate the link between them. As a result, microlearning experiences are prone to become fractured and isolated.

  • It may be ineffective in terms of long-term goals. A single microlearning experience is insufficient for a more complicated topic that involves a number of processes, attributes, and activities.

How to combine mLearning with Microlearning in your eLearning Software?

Microlearning and mLearning are excellent partners that may be used to increase the effectiveness of your education offering.

Consider that microlearning is an effort to offer learners just-in-time learning that is clear and concise. However, it will only be valuable if users can access it whenever they need it. And there is no reason to believe that they will only require assistance (knowledge) when it is conveniently available near their desks. So, here arises mLearning with its accessibility. That’s why microlearning and mobile learning are frequently utilized in tandem.

And now, when we are sure that mLearning is a perfect combination with Microlearning, we need to highlight some tips to take into account when developing eLearning software with such learning approaches.

1. Compatibility for user-friendly functions.

Touchscreen gestures are an essential component of a strong user experience on mobile devices. Learners who have smartphones expect to be able to touch, slide, and pinch as a matter of course. Besides, considering the fact that users will use your app on their way, you need to structure all the features for their convenience. So every button needs to be in the users’ sight, clickable and understandable.

2. Set up offline functionality.

We’re accustomed to being constantly online. Yet, the absence of Wi-Fi is frequent on flights and in distant regions. Let your users learn offline by providing the possibility to keep content on mobile devices and send results once the network is established.

3. Minimize App’s Content.

Of course, multimedia may assist learners in better grasping the content, but in the case of microlearning, the less the better. People will be able to focus on the important subject easier if everything that may distract them is removed. All non-essential components, such as background music or graphics, waste cognitive resources, preventing them from absorbing critical knowledge. Make it brief and to the point.

As you can see, the main rule is to do everything possible that will facilitate online education on the way for users. But, there are also different nuances in the development of an eLearning software itself, so take a look at the article we wrote about how to develop a custom eLearning software.


If you strive to fill in the market with your new app idea, and the main concept you are considering to use is mLearning with Microlearning – reach that goal by carefully designing the best user experience for facilitating the learning curve. With the understanding of the benefits and drawbacks of both learning approaches, you are now ready to develop further your idea and conduct market research.

Our Incora team, which has expertise developing challenging mobile applications, would gladly support you on your trip. Drop us a line and let’s talk!

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