Recording lectures and the impact on student attendance

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					                     Recording lectures and
                the impact on student attendance

                            Jocasta Williams & Michael Fardon
                           Alt-C 2007 Short Paper Presentation

                                        Lectopia System Summary

      • enterprise lecture capture, publication & management
        system developed at the University of Western Australia
      • automates the recording of audio & video from face-to-face
        lectures for publication online

Alt-C 2007 Short Paper Presentation

                                      Lecture Recording Examples

     Document Camera                  Screen Capture                      Video

Alt-C 2007 Short Paper Presentation

                 Debate: recording lectures and attendance

          “The real solution to poor attendance at lectures is simple:
          high-quality, interactive, and engaging lectures. We should
          not deny students the fruits of new technology merely to force
          them into the classroom when that technology can
          substantially enhance their educations.”
              Harvard Crimson Staff, 2006 [Harvard University student publication]

          “Webcasts are a concession to student apathy. The
          broadcasts are essentially an admission of defeat by an
          academic institution, acknowledging that it is okay to skip
                  Daily Californian Editorial, 2006 [UC Berkeley student publication]

Alt-C 2007 Short Paper Presentation

                                         2006 Study: Student Survey

      • survey carried out between 28 August to 15 September 2006
      • survey summary:
            • online
            • anonymous
            • voluntary
      • 1,074 responses received
      • questions included:
            • demographic and study information
            • frequency of attendance at live lectures
            • frequency of access to recordings
            • reasons for using lecture recordings

Alt-C 2007 Short Paper Presentation

                                      2006 Study: Attending Lectures

Alt-C 2007 Short Paper Presentation

2006 Study: Attendance and Use of Recordings

• Always attend:
   • Revision and reviewing concepts
• Regularly attend:
   • Revision and reviewing concepts
   • Timetable clashes
   • Work commitments
• Occasionally attend:
   • Work commitments
   • Preference for recorded lectures
• Never attend:
   • Work commitments
   • Regional location

                       2006 Study: Using Recordings
                  to Complement Lecture Attendance

• Revision and reviewing concepts
• Self-paced, self-controlled learning
• Overcoming language barriers
• Managing distractions in lecture theatres

                     2006 Study: Using Recordings
              as a Substitute for Lecture Attendance

• Timetable clashes
• Work commitments
• Disabilities and/or medical conditions

                              2005 Lecturer Survey:
                     Feedback on Lecture Attendance

• Impact of lecture recordings on attendance at live lectures,
  as perceived by UWA lecturers:
   •   29.4%: No difference
   •   13.2%: Under 10% reduction in attendance
   •   16.2%: Between 11-25% reduction in attendance
   •   41.2%: 25% or more reduction in attendance
• Despite perceived reduction in attendance, strong support for
  recording lectures:
   • “This is the 21st century, students have many other demands on
     their time ... any flexibility we can give them is helpful”
   • “Some students have difficulty getting to all lectures because of
     timetable clashes ... Having lectures available by Lectopia means
     they have no excuse to not know what has been said”

                                     Study Observations

• awareness of irresponsible use of recordings by lecturers
  and students, e.g. “use of lecture recordings negativly [sic]
  impacted my earlier years … The fact that the lectures were
  available led me to not turn up to class and my own stupidity
  led me to not bother accessing them” (student comment)
• possible need to redefine of ‘attendance’ to represent other
  forms of ‘engagement’
• important to maintain balance between providing flexibility
  and negatively impacting campus life
• shifts in lecturing styles, e.g. “This system has encouraged
  me to change the way I lecture, to avoid lower attendance
  rates... I think the lectures I give are now generally more
  effective and enjoyable than in the past” (lecturer comment)


• students “should be able to choose the most appropriate
  mode of learning for them and sometimes this will be face-to-
  face lectures and at other times it may be listening to a
  lecture on an iPod while doing something else” (McElroy and
  Blount, 2006)
• impact of lecture recordings on student socialisation and
  lecturer morale requires close monitoring
• uncertain if current attendance situation represents an
  equilibrium, or if further fluctuations are likely based on
  factors such as changes in teaching methods, improvements
  in technology and increases in course fees

                               Questions / Discussion

                                      Jocasta Williams
               Lectopia Client Manager, University of Western Australia
            Manager, Community Development, Echo360 (Anystream Apreso)


Alt-C 2007 Short Paper Presentation