Over the past 30 years, video has been making its presence felt in the UK’s Universities. Things have moved on quite a bit from those well-remembered Open University documentaries always shown at 5am. Students now live in a world of podcasts and audio-on-demand, creating their own videos and uploading them to YouTube. The potential teaching benefits of video are obvious: video allows us to show diagrams, workings, illustrations, and artifacts as the lecturer talks through them. Students can return to the video explanation again and again, freeing up face-to-face teaching time for deeper discussion.
The University of Cambridge, University of Oxford, and the Open University came together in the JISC-funded Steeple project, which aimed to make it easier for University members to share and find videos online, create and disseminate podcasts and to look at the institutional changes necessary for this to happen. The project found that there is no catch- all solution for these changes but have built a strong and active community sharing best practices and processes.
The final executive summary shares the projects outcomes and resources on managing institutional change, institutional podcasting, distribution portals and infastructure needs as well as links to community support.
CARET is supporting Steeple with research and documentation of current processes and systems on the Steeple wiki through the Benefits Realisation extension project (lead by Dr Bjoern Hassler) which is taking the outputs of Steeple to other universities around the UK, and exploring ways in which this kind of system can be sustained. In addition, we are working with the University Computing Service and the Office of External Affairs and Communications to create the Steeple portal, a user-friendly showcase for public video and audio content, which will be used at the University of Cambridge from early 2010.