Saturday, December 30, 2006

Podcast lectures for uni students

"A lecturer at a West Yorkshire university has abolished traditional lectures in favour of podcasts.
Dr Bill Ashraf, a senior lecturer in microbiology at Bradford University, says the move will free up time for more small group teaching."

This from bbc news

At the beginning of my teaching semester, I posted a blec ( web lecture) or Wele (A web lecture designed to be in the wiki format, though still some work to be done on the Wiki part). But it remains one of the most accessed pages from my logs.

It's probbaly not making my work any easier, but it is a transcript almost of the lecture I'm giving with various links for students. The pod has a much better ease of production, but , and these are issues students will likely grapple with.

1. Can it replace the lecture. No, but that's not what Dr Ashraf is saying
2. The quality of the lecture now resides on a new variable - how good is your pod. Other presentation skills come into play
3. What do the echelons of the university think about it?

"Your giving away trade secrets" is the refrain. On the other side of the spectrum, the University of Westmintser's out going vice chancellor, Dr Geoffrey Copland believes soon everything wil be open souce, and even podded - a direction that's been taken by the Open University.

At a Wiki Wednesday meeting in central london - a gathering of hard core wiki enthusiasts - I met a technician from Ravensbourne College who said they'd be using podcasts, so Dr Ashraf may not be the first, however certainly it appears to be the fiirst time it's been reported on.

I am hoping to catch Dr Asraf for a chat, if his inbox isn't full of requests which it probably is. Skype? Well yes except most unis firewalls don't allow skype penetration.

We'll get there. First few steps by Dr Ashraf. Giant leap follows.

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