Opinions about lecture recording are often polarised and steadfast. At the University of Edinburgh, communication and engagement are built into the heart of its ambitious implementation plans to equip in excess of 300 teaching spaces with lecture recording capability for the start of the 2019/20 teaching year. We have brought together a multi-disciplinary team to support technical implementation, adoption strategies, evaluation and communication.
We would like to share our practice in this area and the effect this has had on attitudes and adoption of lecture recording. We would like to discuss with colleagues how academic engagement has enabled Edinburgh to challenge established assumptions about lecture recording and build a community of practice to ensure effective use of lecture recording. We will explore the following engagement themes and present case studies from Edinburgh in each instance to stimulate discussion:
· Involving academic colleagues closely.
Representation, consultation, training and outreach helped us identify and analyse key concerns among colleagues and students. We believe our outreach to individual departments was particularly effective in toppling barriers to adoption and building ownership and involvement.
· Identifying, and finding ways to allay, their fears.
Attendance drop? Binge watching? Performance in front of the camera? Lectures (warts and all) becoming canon? Unwanted YouTube stardom? Losing control over recordings or intellectual property? Performance monitoring? Use during strikes? We discuss our approaches to some of these issues.
· Promoting the benefits and encouraging innovation.
Institutional experience takes time to percolate, but early adopters and enthusiasts have been keen both to promote and to research further the benefits of recording lectures. We discuss our communication campaigns aimed at academic staff and at students, and point to some of the early research outcomes.
· Making recording “normal” and “easy”.
A majority of colleagues are generally prepared to be recorded…as long as it isn’t any great effort for them. Our two approaches to this are scheduling recording automatically and moving to an opt-out policy. There has been a 62% increase in the number of recordings from Semester 1 2017/18 to Semester 1 2018/19. The number of hours viewed by students has also increased, in this case by almost 100%. Key to the successful transition to an opt-out policy was a campus-wide campaign to explain options and choices, and to position lecturers as firmly in control of their recording decisions.