Design Considerations for Learners on the Go

Conference Archive

mLearnCon 2014 - June 24, 2014

Phil Cowcill

Senior eLearning Specialist
Canadian Department of National Defence

Krista Hildner

Mobile App Developer/Faculty
Canadore College

There are close to a dozen different iOS devices and over 4,200 different Android devices on the market. Designing your content for these different devices is challenging. When considering building training material for mobile devices, you may wonder if it’s best to build a native application or a web application. It’s important to know the advantages and disadvantages of both native and web training applications, and to understand the significant differences between developing for mobile as compared to a traditional desktop.

In this session, you will explore a matrix that helps you understand the advantages and disadvantages of building native training applications vs. web applications. You will discuss topics like flexible layout for smartphones, appropriate fonts, font sizing, colors, and safe viewing areas on a phone. You will explore what mobile training is versus JII (Just In-time Information), and how the differences between the two will impact how and what you build for your mobile learners.

In this session, you will learn:

  • To define a flexible design
  • The advantages of native applications
  • The advantages of web applications
  • Which font settings work best for tablets and smartphones
  • Which colors work best for mobile devices


Novice and intermediate designers, developers, and project managers.

Technology discussed in this session:

iPhone, iPad, Android Devices, and Blackberry Playbook.


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