Lecturers say “No” to Video-Learning

19. März 2010 | By | Category: Keine Kategorie

While working on my Bachelor thesis in the summer of 2009, I made some experiences in regard to how lecturers at a Swiss university received the idea of implementing V-learning in their courses. Before the semester started I asked a selected group of professors and lecturers if I was able to video record and post their lectures online. My objective was to do research on students usage of V-learning and its effect on their exam performance. Unfortunately, all disapproved of my request to conduct the study.
It came as a surprise to me that they all chose to focus on the negative sides of the concept. Some just said plainly no, while others tried to justify their decision by giving reasons why it would be bad for the learning experience of the students. Reasons such as „If the classes are being taped it will inhibit the discussions“, „They won’t dare to ask questions“, „The students won’t come to class“ were given. I do not wish to speculate in the professors candidness, but I personally believe the answers were only partly justified.
Although very unhappy that my initial research project did not work out, I have come to the conclusion that it was a very valuable experience. I have since then been rewriting my thesis and am now curious to find the deeper motivation behind the responses I got. My new aim is to map out what the students actually think about V-learning and do in-depth interviews with professors at my university to gain more knowledge on how some of the goal conflicts could be solved. In my view, the overall goal must be to enhance learning practices.
For all feedback on my project I am deeply grateful.“

Erik Ånerud


#2 Anja
on Mar 19th, 2010 at 3:28 pm

It’s really a shame, that your teachers weren’t willing to support your work. The mentioned reason can conclude into one: “We don’t like changes.”

That students won’t come to class needn’t be a disadvantage. I often recognize, that you only get the unwilling to come, the willing students will come anyway. So what is the problem, when you have an audience full of students who really want to attend your lecture?

The other reason was that their wouldn’t be room for question and discussions can be rejecteed as well. It is just a question of organisation. Maybe you can use a chat channel or a official twitter hashtag. I participated at the EduCamp in Hamburg for some sessions only online and I had the feeling, that the possibility to write a question at twitter even supports the discussion there. Some attendees, who where actually there also twittered there question, because it is more integrative and non-disturbing.

I hope that you will find teachers to support your work. Maybe send a call on twitter. Use the advantages of v-learning: it’s not really needed that you are actually there.

#3 Erik
on Mar 19th, 2010 at 6:32 pm
Thank you so much for your input!
I do not know if European professors in general are more conservative when it comes to change compared to their American peers, or that we are just lagging behind the developments in V-learning? Just look at what they are doing at MIT for instance. At the same time there are some European universities already taking advantage of the opportunities of iTunes U. I mean, professors ought to be a kind of people first welcoming innovation.
There are so many positive sides of V-learning, but why do you think the professors are so afraid of implementing V-learning into their teaching? I almost sensed a video phobia amongst them. Besides proving that the positive sides of V-learning outweigh the negative, how do you think lecturers could be convinced to start implementing it into their daily teaching? What, in your opinion, besides the lecturers learning effect of watching and becoming aware of their own presentation deficits, would be advantages for the lecturer?

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