Colleges seek cash for educational technology as budgets shrink

“There’s a real sense of competition there,” Havice said. “And it was kind of disturbing information … to know that [students] think professors are going to look down on them” if they’re not the first to answer a question.

Some campus ed-tech leaders have maintained skepticism of lecture capture systems as they have become commonplace in most corners of higher education. Critics charge that students, knowing their professor’s lecture will be recorded and available online, have no reason to pay attention during class, or to engage with a lecturer.

“The large-scale implementation of lecture capture is probably one of the costliest and strategically misguided educational technologies that an institution can adopt,” Mark Smithers, an educational technology blogger who has worked at universities in Australia and the United Kingdom, wrote in a blog post. “The technology does nothing to engage the student who, instead of sitting passively in a lecture theatre checking their text messages, will now sit passively in front of a screen at home checking their text messages.”

Meanwhile, nine in 10 students said they would use lecture capture video if given the choice, according to the survey, conducted by Echo360, a Virginia-based company that makes a lecture capture program.

Thirty-five percent of undergraduate respondents said reviewing lecture recordings online was most valuable in improving their grades, while 18 percent said it improved their academic efficiency.

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