Meet Generation Z, or as they are alternatively referred to, the Post-Millennials.
While the exact years of this generation are occasionally debated, it generally refers to those born in the mid to late 90s, and who are now finding themselves in their college years. They are an interesting generation, very technology aware, and exposed to so much in their formative years. Representing almost 25% of the population, their expectations differ from previous generations, even from their Millennial counterparts. They’ve grown up with the internet, social media and arguably are the first “Mobile Native” generation, with almost smartphone ownership approaching 90% according to Pew Research. Their demands in many ways are simple: to be connected, to get various forms of content where they want, when they want and in the palm of their hand.
Connectivity permeates their lives. They shop, consume news, chat/message, create, read, engage, interact, form and build friendships, all from their mobile device. Mobile software like Snapchat and Instagram have set a standard as iconic apps.
What else about Gen Z…
They are the first generation who can really be described as “Mobile natives.” They are an educated generation, who are used to, and expect instantaneous mobile access to information. When they cannot get what they need and want, they immediately move on to something else. They have a voice, want to participate and be heard. Many media types have capitalized on these habits and have successfully provided this mobile digital generation, with multiple paths to get the information they want. They have set the bar high and this group of almost 70 million people expect other products and industries that they use to follow suit.
There is a unique opportunity to capture the attention of this group. To be successful at this we need to get to know Gen Z, their habits, learning styles, needs and simply meet them where they are. This generation is hungry for information and wants to take what they learn and share with others. In fact, sharing as part of the daily workflow goes far beyond peer to peer. Gen Z wants to connect with those around them, including their instructors, team members, authors and other constituents. Always connected Mobile devices present infinite possibilities for these connections. The entire generation does just about everything on their mobile device. Why should their course materials and content be any different?
We live in a digital age. To stay current and relevant, publishers, learning companies and content providers along with instructors need to collectively rethink the delivery model. We have so many opportunities for connection, engagement and productivity. Mobile provides the means to the end. This generation is on the move, they’re hungry for content on the go. Let’s give them what they want to be successful and achieve.
Imagine students being able to access what we traditionally refer to as a textbook “anytime, anywhere.”
Meet the “vPub ™,” the virtual publication, accessible from any mobile device, tablet, and/or laptop. Students choose how they interact with their course materials. They can read chapter by chapter, module by module. They can navigate topic by topic. They can choose to start with video and/or audio, by assessment or simply create their unique path to success. They have the ability to take and share notes and collaborate with their peers. vPubs ™ integrated the technology that makes a smartphone so useful: notifications & messaging, location and mapping services, video/audio, camera control and more! Not all students learn the same. We need to be able to provide every student with tools for individual and collective success.
It’s a new day. Mobile is and can be an incredible learning tool. Let’s embrace it and give students on the go a true learning solution. We all have the possibility to achieve and be productive if we have the tools that help us thrive. Gen Z is no different, in fact they may be the first who are active consumers seeking ways to be faster, smarter and more productive. Learning should fit into the learning experience. Learning should be desired. Learning should feel familiar and not drastically different from other daily activities. Visit www.gadgetsoftware.com to learn more about vPub ™ and have the first, true opportunity to connect with students via mobile.