Tape recorders could make the highly regarded but expensive system of individual tutoring available to many more students.
According to researchers Terry Mayes at Glasgow Caledonian University and John Lee at Edinburgh University, this can be achieved by providing students with access to recordings between tutors and their predecessor students.
Their work involved testing two groups of students. One was given access to conventional material such as textbooks and databases only while the other also had access to resources such as tape recordings created to support the "vicarious learning" principle. The researchers conclude: "Learning through the learning of others is both feasible and beneficial." The research, backed by the Economic and Social Research Council, was carried out in collaboration with BT.