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Archive for the 'iTunes U' Category

UCL at iTunes U – the Year's Top Downloads

NickDawe1 July 2009

Just over a year ago UCL became one of the first European universities to open a ‘store’ on Apple iTunes U. Our director Jeremy Speller has written about the year’s experience on his blog, but I also thought it would be interesting to show the year’s top podcasts:

Top 10 podcasts

  1. Today’s Neuroscience, Tomorrow’s History: Professor Uta Frith
  2. Today’s Neuroscience, Tomorrow’s History: Professor Elizabeth Warrington
  3. Today’s Neuroscience, Tomorrow’s History: Professor Sir Michael Rutter
  4. Today’s Neuroscience, Tomorrow’s History: Professor Richard Gregory
  5. Why Species are Fuzzy(Video)
  6. Stemming Vision Loss with Stem Cells – Seeing is Believing (Audio)
  7. Creation and Evolution in the Universe – from the Vast Simplicity of Pure Energy to the Tiny Complexity of the Human Brain (Video)
  8. The Zen of Running (Video)
  9. The Truth about Italian Food (Video)
  10. The Uses of Nanotechnology (Video)

UCL History of Medicine’s ‘History of Neuroscience’ series has consistently contained the most popular podcasts throughout the year. Apart from the fact that they include detailed interviews with some of the subject’s most respected experts, they’ve also been well promoted on the iTunes U store’s ‘Health’ section.

Many of the other ‘lecture’ podcasts have similarly been promoted to varying degrees on the iTunes U store, which obviously holds a huge influence on downloads. Its debatable as to what kinds of subjects and formats this audience prefers (although notably the ‘History of Neuroscience’ podcasts are comprised of collections of 3-5 minute segments), but one implication is that many ‘inward’ looking podcasts aren’t quite as successful in iTunes U. Statistically, podcasts revolving around open days, internal receptions, etc. are never downloaded anywhere near as much as other items on the site, unless those responsible have worked to promote these independently.