Design and Implementation of a Study Planner for Mobile Devices
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
A study plan is an organized schedule that students create to outline time for study and learning goals. Just like with work or school schedules, university students should develop a study schedule where they can synchronize their everyday life with studying. Creating a study plan not only helps the user become more organized but also holds them accountable for their learning outcomes (Scouller, 2001). In this age where there are many distractions e.g. video games, social networks etc. and people easily lose track of time a study plan is even more important for success in the university since a student needs to have self-discipline and determination to complete their studies without the constant reminders of a teacher.
According to (Truluck and Renne, 2002) a study plan is a method and system for setting up and using a personal learning schedule and path through an instructional product. Using a wizard-style interface, a study plan is established for a user based on a session frequency, along with the date the user wishes to finish the instructional product. Once the user has set up a study plan, each time that user logs in, the user is taken to that day’s list of assigned activities on a personalized home page. From there, the user can check the activity status for past and future lessons, and quickly navigate to a lesson. Users can set up their personalized learning schedules based on their study objectives.
A study plan is an effective way to help students navigate through their education in an organized way. Every student will develop a different study plan; there is no correct study plan for everyone. In creating a personalized study plan, the student will need to do some self-evaluation of their current schedule, finding days when they have fewer personal commitments when they can squeeze some study time. Each student studies differently, so the amount of time needed for studying will differ among classmates. Some students find that studying nightly for two hours is more realistic than studying a few times a week for a longer period.
Students need to identify learning goals for each study session to maximize these scheduled study times, by determining why they are studying, and developing a plan that can help them achieve those goals. The study plan takes into consideration upcoming tests, average in certain courses, and projects/courses that will take more time than others.
This study is driven towards merging efficient time management and organizing schedules with recent technological explosions in mobile computing. Aimed at developing a study planner for android devices because, currently android devices are the most popular in the world today, with 28% of smartphone users with Android devices, while the iPhone accounts for 25% (Pew Research Centre, 2013). Android powers hundreds of millions of devices in over 190 countries worldwide. Also, four in every ten people using android are between the ages of 18 and 34 (the age range for university students) (The Smartphone Consumer, 2012). This project takes advantage of these statistics i.e. the popularity of android to procure a solution to the problem stated above.
Since smartphones are now people’s companions and 94% of students own smartphones. (Ifeanyi, Olatunji, & Enyindah, 2014).Creating an app that helps students study, manage their time is a legitimate idea as it solves a particular need of students and people generally.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
The major problem with students and people, in general, is efficient time management, i.e. maximizing time to achieve results. Another problem is remembering things that have been planned e.g. so many students forget what lectures they have for the day, what assignments, quizzes, reports are due for submission. The traditional solution has been to write down these things in a diary or book of some sort but this is faced with the challenge of loss, damage, and also forgetfulness.
Smartphones provide a valid solution to this problem as people hardly forget their phones’ information can be backed up and stored(most recently cloud storage) so even in the case of theft information can still be recovered.
Designing an app for a phone which helps people do what they normally would have done in their diary, and even the phone reminding them of events forgotten is an effective solution to this problem.
1.3 AIM AND OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The study aims to develop a study planner android application for students.
The objectives of the study are:
(i) To study existing study planner applications.
(ii) To design an android application that will help students efficiently manage their study time
(iii) To develop an android application that will provide an effective way for students to log their lecture days and times, and seamlessly add reminders to lectures that have tests, assignments, reports due, etc.
1.4 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
This study is important because it will help students manage their time and plan their day, focus on their studies and still get on with their normal lives, ensuring that they do not forget about important tests, assignments, reports, and other activities.
1.5 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
This project aims at creating a study planner for android devices that will increase students’ productivity in the study, it is based on the theory that effective time management leads to greater productivity. This is achieved by allowing them to create and manage their study plans on their phones, record their class timetables. The database saves this information which can then be used to trigger a reminder for the user.
1.6 LIMITATIONS OF THE STUDY
The limitations of the study are as follows:
1) The application developed by this study is valid or can run only on android devices. I.e. other smartphones are not supported.
2) The application is limited to the minimum android operating system version specified by the developer i.e. if the developer chooses a minimum android operating system version of 4.0, all devices with an android operating system less than 4.0 can’t use this application.
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