QR Codes in higher education

I noticed a small QR code in the corner of the ham package when I had breakfast. It’s on the frontside and backside, not like a normal Bar code only on the backside. Actually, I found 20% of the stuff I bought this week have QR codes. I think it’s time to write something about QR codes in higher education.

What is a QR code?

A QR Code is a matrix barcode (or two-dimensional code), abbreviated from Quick Response code. It was created by Denso Wave (a Japanese Company) in 1994. A QR Code is readable by QR scanners, mobile devices with a camera, and smart phones.

It has been increasingly used in marketing (e.g., business cards, product packaging, menus, T-shirts) because its unique, fast readability, comparatively large storage capacity, and instant various information (e.g., text, URLs, geographic coordinates). I think it’s because people like to use mobile devices so much.

More resources:

The use QR Codes in higher education

Here, I don’t talk about the QR codes in business which have been used for many occasions. In education, the way of using QR codes to enhance students learning experienceis grows too. Some examples are below:

More resources:

Challenges of using QR codes – different voices

  • Leigh Thompson noted four Limitations of QR Codes: Character Storage, educate customers, extra devices and application, and print quality.  It’s good to know that “There are three types of characters a QR code holds: numeric, alphanumeric and binary. QR codes hold up to 7,089 numeric characters. Alphanumeric characters only fit a maximum of 4,296 characters. Binary characters hold up to 2,953 characters. The final size of the QR code does not affect the amount of characters the QR code can hold.
  • Jesse Scott pointed three challenges in his post Can QR Codes Enhance Student Learning?…: raise users’ awareness, usability of websites or online resources in mobile internet, and  required smart devices.

More resources (Using QR codes in education is still minority):

Relevant resources:

  • Lab42 survey  – 58% people know what it is. (a quick-and-dirty research approach)
  • 17 Statistics on QR Code Marketing – 64% don’t know what they’re for. Top reason for scanning a QR code is to get a discount, followed closely by getting more info on a product or service (44%).

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