Bringing Learning to the Workplace: A Smartphone App for Reflection and Increased Authenticity of Learning

  • Karen D. KöningsEmail author
  • Wim H. Gijselaers
Part of the Advances in Business Education and Training book series (ABET, volume 6)


A strong need exists to connect learner experiences at the workplace with formal training activities. This would improve authenticity of learning, but surprisingly few initiatives have been taken so far. In this project mobile devices (smartphones) were used while students were attending clinical clerkships. We aimed to develop learning practices – through use of mobile devices – which solicit problems or issues encountered in practice from students. During group meetings registered learning moments were discussed with students and medical teachers. Sixteen residents used the app and attended three meetings within six weeks. Results showed that residents used the app to capture learning moments covering a wide range of general medical competencies, which are highly relevant for their professional development. Group meetings were especially valued because of their safe atmosphere for discussion, similarity of problems encountered by residents, solutions from different perspectives, and the input by the tutor as an experienced practitioner. Success factors, opportunities for future implementations, and challenges are discussed. This project shows that technology can be effectively used for scaffolding learning at the workplace. The developed app helps connect learning experiences and formal education meetings and facilitates authentic learning from the learner’s own experiences.


Mobile Device Professional Practice Group Meeting General Skill Workplace Learning 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Educational Development and Research and Graduate School of Health Professions EducationMaastricht UniversityMaastrichtThe Netherlands
  2. 2.Department of Educational Research and DevelopmentMaastricht UniversityMaastrichtThe Netherlands

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