As the SCOOTER website approaches a year old, what do we know about users of our teaching resources? The website has been designed using search engine optimisation principles and using social networking to spread the news about our open resources. The site has had nearly 5,000 visits in 11 months. Visits come from 91 countries all over the world, with India providing the third most visits next to the US and UK. Brazil and Nigeria are next on the list.
Nearly 15,000 pages have been viewed containing teaching resources on a range of subjects including arts, science, history and social sciences. There are many more resources to come! Visits using mobile devices accounts for only 5% but this is steadily growing and includes both Android and Apple operating systems. It will be interesting to see what effect our new APP has on mobile users.
SCOOTER ranks of the first page of Google for our main key phrase “sickle cell anaemia”. The picture above also shows all the other keywords (excluding sickle cell) by which people are finding the website. Over half the visitors come through the search engines – showing that the high ranking position of SCOOTER on the web is driving visitors. 22% of visitors come from other sites with the SCOOTER link, i.e. referring sites.
How else do we monitor the impact of SCOOTER?
Well in addition to the web analytics, we review all the social networking spaces (23 in total including Facebook and Twitter). We have surveys set up on the website to invite feedback from people who have used our teaching resources. We have tested SCOOTER with De Montfort University staff and students with positive responses. But what does the general public think?
Matching the opinions of our students, the comments from SCOOTER users are positive in that the concept of open resources is a good thing.
“I think it is most important to use ICT in an open free way to gather and disseminate data and knowledge”.
“Good idea. Opens up more resources”.
“It should be policy for all”.
“Fully supportive of this because they can integrate research out puts/expertise to influence/support learning and teaching”.
So what about the future of SCOOTER?
The SCOOTER project at De Montfort University continues to build. There are many open teaching resources waiting to be released. We are doing some technical work behind the scenes to create a database and a simpler way for uploading content.
We have had APPS developed for Android and Apple systems and will be evaluating whether the APPS improve the discovery and use of resources.
Feedback from the public has been useful – we are going to make the purpose of the site clearer in that it is both for the public and for people in education. It was always our intention that the teaching resources on the website would be used for both.