In 2007, the Open University (OU) sought to extend the reach of its science-based programme-making by establishing a rolling programme of innovative outreach activities, including a series of podcasts.
Graphic Science was commissioned to evaluate the first of these podcasts.
We took a sample of Year 12 and 13 students (ages 17 – 18) who we recruited through a local sixth form centre. We held a preliminary discussion with them about their attitudes to internet resources for both educational and leisure use.
The students were given a URL from which to download the podcast and asked to reconvene a week later, having listened to the podcast and also downloaded and listened to any other podcast of their choice.
The following week’s discussion focused on reactions to the podcast and suggestions for improvements, which fed into our report for the OU.