The Mancunion

Britain's biggest student newspaper

All lectures to be podcasted by next year

Lecture capture facilities will be in place in 100 locations across the university by September 2013

By

The University is undertaking a podcasting programme, aiming to provide automated lecture capture facilities in all university lecture theatres by September 2013.

The project has been trialled in 10 university locations over the past two years but will be expanded to 100 locations including 74 lecture theatres and 26 seminar rooms.

During the trial around 5,000 students made use of the system, downloading 163,000 podcasts.

The most popular lecture series created over 13,000 downloads.

The reaction from students who have been using the podcasts has been positive, with a survey finding that over 99% stated that they believed having access to podcasts would improve their examination results.

88% felt that their unit satisfaction had improved and 94% wished to see the technology used on a greater scale.

Talking to the Mancunion, Stuart Phillips, Media Technologies Co-ordinator at the University and part of the project board wanted to enforce the ethos of the project: “the podcasts are an additional tool for students to revisit content rather than a replacement for lecture attendance.”

“We measured lecture attendance during our pilot programme and found that as few as 6% of students were willing to use podcasting as an alternative to experiencing a live classroom session. Interestingly, an independent study by EPS came to the same conclusion, measuring a 6% change in attendance for podcasted lectures,” he added.

University Education Officer Luke Newton agreed: “There is loads of research that has gone into it and statistics from the university show that students actually do still attend lectures.”

“You get more out of a lecture by actually being there than re-listening, but podcasting is a useful revision tool to go over everything.”

Vanshika Gupta, a third year Economics student who has been using the podcasts said: “Though podcasts don’t give you the same experience as lectures, it is very important to review what you have learned in class.”