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Steeple - podcasting in HE

JISC-funded project exploring use of podcasts

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Gráinne Conole
28 April 2009

Ben Hawkridge was talking at an OU e-learning community event 29th April 09 on Steeple.

His abstract for the event is as follows: 

Open University participation in the proposal by the Oxford University Computing Services to investigate podcast encoding engine within institutional delivery channels. This is work planned for the institutional innovation programme and will be appropriately integrated into the existing work which is already underway in this institution.


Podcasting at an enterprise level is a critical exemplar technology for The Open University and represents a significant large-scale institutional problem. We consider this to be a valuable opportunity to be able to work jointly with partners in the University of Cambridge and the University of Oxford. Since we launched our participation in the Apple iTunes U podcast channel in June, we have already shipped terabytes of Open University podcasts to the world. Supporting a high level of University engagement with our existing students, and with new members of our growing community worldwide is a great opportunity. It is entirely appropriate that the best practice solutions being produced in our computing support divisions be shared with the UK HE community in this way. 

Further details from the website below... 

Steeple is a JISC funded UK Higher Education community project, led by Oxford University, the Open University, and Cambridge University. The vision for the Steeple project is to investigate, develop and document sustainable institutional infrastructure to support university wide educational podcasting. Steeple also hopes to instigate a viable community around scalable, enterprise-level solutions suitable for the UK-HE sector in the areas of automated video/audio capture, video/audio processing, and video/audio delivery ("podcasting").

The projects main concerns are:

  • Reducing costs for media processing and media management
  • Making it easier to deliver media into channels important to the institution, such as iTunesU and the web portal
  • Supporting and documenting adoption of best practice for sustainability of the architecture and to ensure longevity of institutional investment

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