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Impact of class lecture webcasting on attendance and learning


The present study investigated the impact of class lecture webcasts on students’ attendance and learning. The research design employed four data collection methods in two class sections—one with webcast access and another without—of the same course taught by the same instructors. Results indicated the following four major findings. (1) The availability of webcasts negatively impacted student attendance but the availability of other online resources such as PowerPoint slides had a greater negative impact on attendance. (2) Webcast access appeared to nullify the negative effects absenteeism had on student performance. (3) For most performance measures based on lecture content, more webcast viewing was associated with higher performance. (4) Most students in the webcast section reported positive learning experiences and benefits from using webcasts, even though a majority also reported using webcasts for missing a class. In summary, these results collectively suggest that webcasts could have positive effects on students’ learning experiences and performance, even if class attendance does decline.

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This study was conducted with support from Division of Instructional Innovation and Assessment at the University of Texas at Austin.

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Correspondence to Tomoko Traphagan.

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Traphagan, T., Kucsera, J.V. & Kishi, K. Impact of class lecture webcasting on attendance and learning. Education Tech Research Dev 58, 19–37 (2010). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11423-009-9128-7

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  • Webcasting
  • Podcasting
  • Attendance
  • Student learning
  • Student performance