, Volume 44, Issue 1, pp 119–132 | Cite as

Mobiles for literacy in developing countries: An effectiveness framework

  • Daniel A. WagnerEmail author
  • Nathan M. Castillo
  • Katie M. Murphy
  • Molly Crofton
  • Fatima Tuz Zahra


In recent years, the advent of low-cost digital and mobile devices has led to a strong expansion of social interventions, including those that try to improve student learning and literacy outcomes. Many of these are focused on improving reading in low-income countries, and particularly among the most disadvantaged. Some of these early efforts have been called successful, but little credible evidence exists for those claims. Drawing on a robust sample of projects in the domain of mobiles for literacy, this article introduces a design solution framework that combines intervention purposes with devices, end users, and local contexts. In combination with a suggested set of purpose-driven methods for monitoring and evaluation, this new framework provides useful parameters for measuring effectiveness in the domain of mobiles for literacy.


Literacy Mobiles Technology Developing countries Success Evidence Teachers Quality of education 


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Authors and Affiliations

  • Daniel A. Wagner
    • 1
    Email author
  • Nathan M. Castillo
    • 1
  • Katie M. Murphy
    • 1
  • Molly Crofton
    • 1
  • Fatima Tuz Zahra
    • 1
  1. 1.International Literacy Institute, Graduate School of EducationUniversity of PennsylvaniaPhiladelphiaUSA

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