Coursecasting Evaluation Study
In doing some research last week, I ran across a great evaluation of an educational podcasting trial at the University of Washington called "UW Podcasting: Evaluation of Year One" (PDF) by Cara Lane of the UW Office of Learning and Technology. They did a good bit of student and instructor surveying about podcasting in the classroom. Definitely worth a look if you're interested in data on podcasting in higher ed.
A couple of interesting points in the findings:
* 76% of students they surveyed in classes that used podcasts for lectures had some sort of mp3 player (props for not just asking if they have an iPod!)
* 87% of students listened to the course podcasts on their computer (despite the fact that they were way more likely than not to own an mp3 player)
* 73% of students who had access to online notes listened to the podcasts while looking at the notes
* 87% of students who had access to online PPT slides looked at them while listening
I thought it was interesting that most students used the audio lectures in combination with visual material. Definitely something to consider in creating portable library instruction materials. Maybe video screencasts of how to use resources will work better than just audio. Or provide the audio overview for a specific class in tandem with a webpage that outlines suggested resources for the assignments for that course. And of course provide an easy way for students to either stream your content from your website in addition to being able to subscribe using a podcast receiver.