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The effectiveness of m-learning in the form of podcast revision lectures in higher education

Computers & Education Volume 50, Number 2, ISSN 0360-1315 Publisher: Elsevier Ltd


In this paper we describe a study of the effectiveness of mobile learning (m-learning) in the form of podcasting, for teaching undergraduate students in Higher Education. Podcasting involves downloading a series of audio or video broadcasts (files) onto a digital media player, via a computer, over a period of weeks. These can then be watched or listened to when, where and as often as students choose. The use of digital media players, popularised by Apple’s iPod™, is widespread amongst undergraduate students. A pilot survey of Business and Management students indicated that over 74% owned some form of digital media player, with a further 7% indicating that they intended to purchase one in the next six months.Whilst podcasting is being utilized as a teaching tool by some educators in the secondary sector, its use in higher education, and its effectiveness as a learning tool for adults, remains to be established.In our study, a separate group of just under 200 first-level students were given a series of revision podcasts after completing a course in Information and Communications Technology (and prior to their examination). As part of the subscription process, they had to complete an online questionnaire about their experience. The questionnaire utilized a five-point Likert scale comparing their attitudes to lectures, podcasts, notes, textbooks and multimedia e-learning systems.Statistical analysis of the results of the study indicates that students believe that podcasts are more effective revision tools than their textbooks and they are more efficient than their own notes in helping them to learn. They also indicate that they are more receptive to the learning material in the form of a podcast than a traditional lecture or textbook. The study suggests that the use of podcasts as a revision tool has clear benefits as perceived by undergraduate students in terms of the time they take to revise and how much they feel they can learn. Coupled with the advantages of flexibility in when, where and how it is used, podcasting appears to have significant potential as an innovative learning tool for adult learners in Higher Education.


Evans, C. (2008). The effectiveness of m-learning in the form of podcast revision lectures in higher education. Computers & Education, 50(2), 491-498. Elsevier Ltd. Retrieved January 28, 2023 from .

This record was imported from Computers & Education on January 30, 2019. Computers & Education is a publication of Elsevier.

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