I recently worked on an annotated bibliography on lecture capture, as part of work I’ve done in partnership with others. I thought I would share in case others are interested. The introduction (overall highlights) from the annotated bibliography follows. (Please feel free to email me if you would like a copy of the full version with full citations and annotations – firstname.lastname@example.org).
What is lecture capture?
For the purposes of this limited annotated bibliography, lecture capture is a methodology employed to capture information from a lecture (either a brief concept lecture or a full-length class lecture) in single (e.g. audio only) or multiple (e.g. rich media) channels with the intent to deliver via a web-based interface on-demand lectures to users. “Rich media” is the “high end” of lecture capture options, and can be described as a system that captures information (e.g. lecture capture) from multiple inputs (e.g. video, audio, instructional slides, documents and course content), and then delivers that content through standard web browsers as a web-based presentation (understanding that this material could also be saved on CDs, DVDs, etc.). Beyond “rich media,” other options may include solutions such as audio-only podcasts, narrated presentations with audio and slides only, or various other combinations of media intended to capture lecture content to be accessed via a web-interface. This bibliography was created to provide some resources for consideration and further exploration in the lecture capture area, and is not intended to be a comprehensive review of the literature.
Both the rise of blended learning (e.g. combining face-to-face with online environments) and the continued demand for distance education means an ever increasing use of emerging technologies for delivering content. More emphasis, actually, may eventually be placed on blended learning opportunities rather than purely online courses (Bonk & Lee, 2006), and while lecture capture software can be used to deliver content in the distance education arena, on-campus courses may benefit from lecture capture technologies as part of a larger teaching strategy to provide additional opportunities for student access to course/lecture content. Keeping that in mind, a limited review of the literature provides us with several insights into lecture capture:
• When asked, students are largely positive about participating in classes with lecture capture options. This appears to hold true whether the lecture capture option is “rich media” or simply an audio-only podcast (Copley, 2007; DeAngelis, 2009; Gosper, McNeill, Woo, Phillips, Preston, & Green, 2007; May, 2008).
• Depending on the material, an audio-only capture may be fine, though with certain materials (e.g. working through a Physics problem, understanding a formula, diagramming a concept), a combination of audio and video may be preferable in support of student learning outcomes. The ultimate effectiveness of any particular technology solution does not seem to depend on how “high end” the solution is, but rather, how it is used to meet the instructional needs, and how it is incorporated as part of a comprehensive teaching strategy. Uses might include, for example, mini-lectures or supplemental review materials or tutorials and access to entire lectures that are searchable and indexed. For students, understanding how to access the materials and suggestions for ways to use them may support student learning (Brecht & Obilby, 2008; Copley, 2007; Dey, Burn, & Gerdes, 2009; May, 2008; Zhang, Zhou, Briggs, & Nunamaker, 2006).
• Students use lecture capture materials for many purposes, most notably for reviewing material, completing homework, and preparing for quizzes and exams (Brecht & Obilby, 2008; Copley, 2007; Gosper, McNeill, Woo, Phillips, Preston, & Green, 2007).
• No empirical evidence was apparent in this limited literature review that suggested the use of lecture capture options significantly decreases course attendance. Self-reporting student surveys (the most popular methodology noted for gathering feedback regarding lecture capture) did not indicate that a large number of students would likely skip face-to-face lectures if they had lecture capture as another class option. This would likely hold most true for classes that used lecture capture options for supplemental material and used class time for engaging, hands-on learning strategies such as group problem-solving and collaborative tasks (Copley, 2007; DeAngelis, 2009).
• No empirical evidence was found in this limited literature review that suggested the addition of an instructor image (e.g. video of instructor talking) increases student learning outcomes – and drawing on the work of Mayer (see work of Dey, Burn, & Gerdes, 2009) – two visual images (e.g. instructor head and information slides) may actually compete with each other. However, an image of the instructor in a DE course setting may increase students’ enjoyment of of the course and personalize the experience (though whether or not this should be in each lecture presentation is unclear). More research was suggested in this area (Dey, Burn, & Gerdes, 2009), as in some studies, students preferred audio and screen capture to other alternatives (DeAngelis, 2009). Of additional interest: A recent article in Inside Higher Education http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2010/03/29/lms speaks to the importance of the human element for distance education courses.
While lecture capture (whether of entire lectures or of targeted content segments) provide opportunities for students to further engage with course content, the use of lecture capture as the sole medium for course delivery, especially in a distance education course setting, may not meet the needs of all students. As noted by Cao et. al (2008) in their review of a number of studies and meta-analyses in the technology supported learning arena, learning requires an “iterative interaction process between learners and knowledge providers” (53). While being able to seek the content one needs and watch it over again, as supported by lecture capture, can indeed be interactive (e.g. a student-content interaction framework) and can support student learning (e.g. see Dey, Burn & Gerdes, 2009; Zhang, Zhou, Briggs, & Nunamaker, 2006, and Brecht & Ogilby, 2008), the importance of student-instructor and student-to-student interaction which can be supported by a variety of synchronous (e.g. conferencing or chat software) or asynchronous (e.g. online discussion forums) technologies, or through face-to-face activities, should also be considered as part of a holistic framework for facilitating instruction. In brief, lecture capture software should be viewed as one tool in the instructional toolkit, and not as the only off-the-shelf solution for every instructional situation.
By the way, UNC Charlotte has provided some online information referring both to additional research in this area as well as a section on Best Practices for Implementation: http://teaching.uncc.edu/resources/tip-sheets/lecture-capture