Smartphone usage for learning among postgraduate students
TARAN-AWAN Journal of Educational Research and Technology Management


handheld learning device

How to Cite

Rahman, K. T. (2021). Smartphone usage for learning among postgraduate students. TARAN-AWAN Journal of Educational Research and Technology Management, 2(1), 1-11. Retrieved from


This study explores the numerous effects smartphones have on learning among postgraduate students. Research objectives were formulated from the gaps in literature which comprise of exploring influential factors, pros and cons along with academic performance, which surround smartphone usage in an educational setting. Moreover, this study followed a cross-sectional research design consisting of a purposive sampling technique. Template analysis was conducted on data collected via telephonic interviews. Altogether, the results revealed that 40% of respondents believe that the internet is a key influential factor when it comes to using smartphones for educational purposes. In addition, many of the benefits and drawbacks of smartphone usage in learning were highlighted by the students. Seventy per cent vouched for being able to learn while away from laptops whereas 60% said it was distracting. Plus, 80% of respondents perceive that smartphone usage does not have an impact on their academic standing. They associated more importance to the primary ways of learning through computers and laptops. Assessments were also drawn using popular theoretical concepts like Goodhue and Thompson’s Technology-to-Performance Chain (TPC) model. Henceforth, this study has enriched the existing literature in terms of novel contributions. It is recommended that future researchers conduct experiments on a larger sample size to further enrich smartphone literature.



Ahmed, R.R., Salman, F., Malik, S.A., Streimikiene, D., Soomro, R.H., and Pahi, M.H. (2020) “Smartphone Use and Academic Performance of University Students: A Mediation and Moderation Analysis”. Sustainability 12(1), 439.

Al-Emran, M., Alkhoudary, Y.A., Mezhuyev, V., and Al-Emran, M. (2019) “Students and Educators Attitudes towards the Use of M-Learning: Gender and Smartphone Ownership Differences”. International Journal of Interactive Mobile Technologies (iJIM) 13(1), 127.

Alfawareh, H. and Jusoh, S. (2014), “Smartphones usage among university students: Nahran University case”, International Journal of Academic Research Part B, 6(1), 321-326.

Aljomaa, S., Al.Qudah, M., Albursan, I., Bakhiet, S. and Abduljabbar, A. (2016) "Smartphone Addiction Among University Students In The Light Of Some Variables". Computers In Human Behavior 61, 155-164.

Alrajawy, I., Isaac, O., Ghosh, A., Nusari, M., Al-Shibami, A.H., & Ameen, A.A. (2018) “Determinants of Student’s Intention to Use Mobile Learning In Yemeni Public Universities: Extending The Technology Acceptance Model (Tam) With Anxiety”. International Journal of Management and Human Science (IJMHS) 2(2), 1-9.

Al-Zaman, M.S. (2020) “Digitalization and Transformation of Teaching and Learning in Bangladesh”. Advances in Early Childhood and K-12 Education Challenges and Opportunities in Global Approaches to Education, 56–77.

Baert, S., Vujić, S., Amez, S., Claeskens, M., Daman, T., Maeckelberghe, A., Omey, E., and Marez, L.D. (2019) “Smartphone Use and Academic Performance: Correlation or Causal Relationship?” Kyklos 73(1), 22–46.

Black, I. (2006) “The presentation of interpretivist research”. Qualitative Market Research: An International Journal, 9(4), 319–324.

Brooks, J. and King, N. (2014) Doing Template Analysis: Evaluating An End-Of-Life Care Service.

Carson, D., Gilmore, A., Perry, C., and Gronhaug, K. (2001). Qualitative Marketing Research. London: SAGE.

Crompton, H., Burke, D., and Gregory, K.H. (2017) “The Use of Mobile Learning in PK-12 Education: A Systematic Review”. Computers & Education 110, 51–63.

D’ambra, J., Wilson, C.S. and Akter, S. (2013), “Application of the task-technology fit model to structure and evaluate the adoption of e-books by academics”, Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology, 64(1), 48-64.

DeLone, W. and McLean, E. (1992) Information systems success: The quest for the dependant variable. Institute for Information Research.

Elmorshidy, A. (2012) “Mobile Learning – A New Success Model”. The Journal of Global Business Management, 8.

Gavali, M.Y., Khismatrao, D.S., Gavali, Y.V., and Patil, K.B. (2017) “Smartphone, the New Learning Aid amongst Medical Students”. Journal Of Clinical And Diagnostic Research 11(5), JC05–JC08.

Goodhue, D.L. and Thompson, R.L. (1995), “Task-technology fit and individual performance”, MIS Quarterly, 19(2), 213-236.

Halder, I., Halder, S. & Guha, A. (2015). “Understanding student’s use of mobile phones: Exploring use of advanced technological aids for an educational purpose”. Journal of media and Communication Studies 7(4), 81-87.

Hossain, M. and Ahmed, S. (2016) "Academic Use Of Smartphones By University Students: A Developing Country Perspective". The Electronic Library 34 (4), 651-665.

Hudson, L., and Ozanne, J. (1988). Alternative Ways of Seeking Knowledge in Consumer Research. Journal of Consumer Research, 14(4), 508–521.

Johnson, S., Radhakrishnan, N. (2017) “Academic Use of Smart Phones Among The Students Of Business Schools In UAE - A Study”. KIIT Journal of Library and Information Management 4, 32-36.

Khan, A. A., Khalid, A., & Iqbal, R. (2019) “Revealing the Relationship between Smartphone Addiction and Academic Performance of Students: Evidences from Higher Educational Institutes of Pakistan”. Pakistan Administrative Review, 3(2), 74-83.

King, N. (2012). Doing template analysis. Qualitative Organizational Research: Core Methods and Current Challenges, London: Sage.

Kushlev, K., Proulx, J., and Dunn, E.W. (2016) “‘Silence Your Phones’”. Proceedings of the 2016 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems.

Kwun, O., Fulk, K., Alijani, S., Kim, H. (2015) "UNDERSTANDING SUCCESSFUL USE OF SMARTPHONES IN AN ACADEMIC CONTEXT: HBCU STUDENTS’ PERSPECTIVE". Academy of Educational Leadership Journal 19 (3), 175.

Lavrakas, P.J. (2008) Encyclopedia of Survey Research Methods. Thousand Oaks (Calif.): SAGE.

Lepp, A., Barkley, J. and Karpinski, A. (2015) "The Relationship Between Cell Phone Use And Academic Performance In A Sample Of U.S. College Students". SAGE Open 5 (1), 2.

Lin, H., Lin, S., Yeh, C. and Wang, Y. (2016) "Measuring Mobile Learning Readiness: Scale Development And Validation". Internet Research 26 (1), 265-287.

McGill, T.J. and Klobas, J.E. (2009), “A task-technology fit view of learning management system impact”, Computers & Education, 52(2), 496-508.

Mendoza, J.S., Pody, B.C., Lee, S., Kim, M., and Mcdonough, I.M. (2018) “The Effect of Cellphones on Attention and Learning: The Influences of Time, Distraction, and Nomophobia”. Computers in Human Behavior 86, 52–60.

Ng, S.F., Hassan, N.S., Nor, N.H., & Malek, N.A. (2017) “The Relationship between Smartphone Use and Academic Performance: A Case of Students in A Malaysian Tertiary Institution”. Malaysian Online Journal of Educational Technology, 5, 58-70.

Racero, F.J., Bueno, S., and Gallego, M.D. (2020) “Predicting Students’ Behavioral Intention to Use Open Source Software: A Combined View of the Technology Acceptance Model and Self-Determination Theory”. Applied Sciences 10(8), 2711.

Rahman, K. T. (2021) “Driving Engagement on Instagram: A Comparative Analysis of Amazon Prime and Disney+”. SEISENSE Business Review, 1(3), 1–11.

Rahman, K.T. (2016) “Performance of BRAC Bank in the SME banking sector”. BRAC University.

Rosen, L.D., Carrier, L.M., and Cheever, N.A. (2013) “Facebook and Texting Made Me Do It: Media-Induced Task-Switching While Studying”. Computers in Human Behavior 29(3), 948–958.

Shava, H., Chinyamurindi, W. and Somdyala, A. (2016) "An Investigation Into The Usage Of Mobile Phones Among Technical And Vocational Educational And Training Students In South Africa". SA Journal Of Information Management 18 (1).

Shin, D.-H., Shin, Y.-J., Choo, H., and Beom, K. (2011) “Smartphones as Smart Pedagogical Tools: Implications for Smartphones as u-Learning Devices”. Computers in Human Behavior 27(6), 2207–2214.

Skinner, B. (2014) Science and Human Behaviour.

Swar, B. and Hameed, T. (2017) “Fear of Missing out, Social Media Engagement, Smartphone Addiction and Distraction: Moderating Role of Self-Help Mobile Apps-Based Interventions in the Youth”. Proceedings of the 10th International Joint Conference on Biomedical Engineering Systems and Technologies.

USAID Bangladesh (2019) Comprehensive Private Sector Assessment.

Valk, J.-H., Rashid, A.T., and Elder, L. (2010) “Using Mobile Phones to Improve Educational Outcomes: An Analysis of Evidence from Asia”. The International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning 11(1), 117.

Winskel, H., Kim, T.-H., Kardash, L., and Belic, I. (2019) “Smartphone Use and Study Behavior: A Korean and Australian Comparison”. Heliyon 5(7).

Yi, Y., You, S. and Bae, B. (2016) "The Influence Of Smartphones On Academic Performance". Library Hi Tech 34 (3), 480-499.

Yunita, A., Nursechafia, N., Setiawan, E., Nugroho, H., and Ramadhan, H. (2018) “The Relationship between Mobile Phone Usage in Classroom and Academic Achievement in College Life”. International Journal of Interactive Mobile Technologies (iJIM ) 12(8), 96.

Creative Commons License

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Copyright (c) 2021 TARAN-AWAN Journal of Educational Research and Technology Management