Designing mobile LMS interfaces: learners' expectations and experiences

Grace Ssekakubo (Department of Computer Science, University of Cape Town, Cape Town, South Africa)
Hussein Suleman (Department of Computer Science, University of Cape Town, Cape Town, South Africa)
Gary Marsden (Department of Computer Science, University of Cape Town, Cape Town, South Africa)

Interactive Technology and Smart Education

ISSN: 1741-5659

Publication date: 7 June 2013



This paper aims to present findings of a study that was carried out to identify strategies of enabling learners in developing countries to fully exploit the potential of learning management systems (LMSs). The study set out to: identify the services of learning management systems that are most needed and desired by university learners in developing countries; and identify appropriate access strategies that would guide design decisions on how to effectively and satisfactorily deliver such services to the university students in developing countries.


A total of 144 students from two African universities participated in the study by responding to an online survey questionnaire. The questionnaire asked students: how often they accessed LMSs to obtain, create and exchange information and knowledge; their preference for the different devices used for accessing the LMS; the LMS services they are most often required to access; and the services they most desire to use.


The findings of the survey indicate that the most desired and most accessed LMS services by the students include: assignments, announcements, resources, course outlines and the chat room. At the same time, mobile phones are rated the least used devices for accessing the LMS services, mainly due to inadequate design of LMSs for mobile interaction.


The paper also presents mobile LMS interface designs and ideas achieved through a participatory design process for enhancing the accessibility of the most needed and desired LMS services on mobile phones.



Ssekakubo, G., Suleman, H. and Marsden, G. (2013), "Designing mobile LMS interfaces: learners' expectations and experiences", Interactive Technology and Smart Education, Vol. 10 No. 2, pp. 147-167.

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