The results are in!
Huddersfield University’s academic staff (all of whom are Fellows of the Higher Education Academy) have been surveyed by UCU with regards to the proposed lecture capture system. Their professional opinion is summarized in the document below.
- 73% of staff surveyed believe that attendance at lectures would go down. This might have a negative impact on the experience of students attending lectures. Part of the enjoyment of a lecture is the contact with fellow students.
- 85% of staff surveyed believe that lecture capture would involve a lot of extra work in editing etc. Perhaps staff would prefer to be concentrating on providing more face-to-face contact with students rather than editing video.
- 65% of staff surveyed think this doesn’t represent value for money for the student. If the university starts to rely more and more upon recordings of lectures, the quality of which is not guaranteed (especially without editing), how will students feel about this?
- 77% of staff surveyed believe that it will lead to a stultified (boring) and less spontaneous lecture experience. 75% of staff surveyed said it will lead to an uncomfortable and self-conscious experience for staff and students. There will be less humour, everyone (staff and students) will be on edge about everything said in the lecture because they know that it will be recorded.
- 80% of staff surveyed said it will lead to students becoming more reluctant to participate in lectures. It’s not just the staff being recorded here!
- 78% of staff surveyed believe many lectures with sensitive material will no longer have full and frank discussions. This is a major loss to a university where the whole idea is to debate openly and freely.
What Are We Asking For?
- UCU is not against Lecture Capture per se, nor are we attempting to speak on behalf of students. We might comment on what students have mentioned or not mentioned to us, which is not the same as speaking on behalf of students.
- UCU are asking for academics to be treated with respect as professionals and for their ability to judge the suitability and quality of teaching materials, and to have control over which materials they publish.
- UCU are asking for academics to have their legal rights upheld, which (as with all performers) includes the legal right to decide whether or not they wish to be recorded.