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How can podcasts be used in teaching?

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Gráinne Conole
19 November 2010

Have people got examples of how podcasts can be used in teaching?

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Gráinne Conole
9:29am 19 November 2010

There are many reasons and advantages for using podcasts. One big advantage is that the student can listen to a lecture afterwards and can repeat listen before the exam and can press pause.

Bent Kure
5:05pm 19 November 2010

Where I work, at the University of Oslo, we are mainly concerned about how to capture all(?) lectures in an easy way without the use of technichens in the lecture hall - and then podcast them.  We do not offer a lot of ODL-courses, and are mainly concerned about offering the best possible learning resources to our campus students. We have discovered a lot of good rerasons for podcast of lectures like:

  • Those who were sick can listen to the podcast/lecture
  • Those who live far away dont need always to travell to the University just for one single lecture
  • If the lecture contained diffucult parts, the students can listen once or many times to it.
  • Students with another mother language than norwegian, have great benefits for repeating
  • All studens benefit of repeating the lecture the days after it where hold
  • Students with disabilities who had difficulties to come to the Uni og difficulies to listen og concentrate, can lsiten more to it.
  • Those with Dyslexia will profit
  • Prisioners in Jail kan now follow courses and be good citizens
  • Students can download them to their iPod and listen to them on the tube, walking, at the buss or whereever they are.
  • Students can sitt together, lsiten, stopp and then discuss what was said the last 5 minuttes. thats not so easy during an ordinary lecture to say: "Stop, we want to discuss and talk together"
  • The teacher can lsiten to it, and experience himself how god/bad he is, and then try to be better
  • The future students (those who are gooing to choose university) can listen to potensial teacher and use that information when they choose where to study.

Gráinne Conole
9:31am 20 November 2010

Brilliant thanks Bent =- great list!

Khorshed Bhote
10:22am 20 November 2010

Indeed all great reasons.  Podcasts can be useful for CPD in your own time.  Also, if a teacher can't make it to a session, instead of cancelling it students can listen to a podcast or even a vodcast.

Svend Andreas Horgen
5:58pm 22 November 2010

Great list, Bent! One very interesting aspect of podcasting, is that it can change the mindset of the teacher. Why give the same lecture over and over again, once recorded as a podcast? I find myself redefining my role as a teacher due to my videos. Now, I provide the students with the videos, and they work with the learning material prior to the lectures! Actually, they don´t need the teacher anymore. Or do they? Yes, but they need me in a different way. My lectures can now change from "information delivery" to be more focused on activities, discussions, tutoring and helping them see the broader picture, etc. And the good part: Many excellent video/audio-podcasts exist, and I can use them (if I don´t find time/energy to create my own :-) I really love creating videos, so I will focus a lot on video-podcasting in the coming months... 

Bent Kure
8:21am 23 November 2010

Hi Svend

I sometimes compare the use of podcast of lectures (Lecture capture) with the students use of an international well-respected text-book. Some hundred years ago, every lecturerer in an university has to write his own text-book. But as you know, today only the best teachers/professors write text-books and let a publisher distribute and sell them. Thats better for the student (They get the best book) and its much more cost effective for the educational sector. Lets do it with the Lectures too: Capture, Store and publish them. The teacher who set up the curriculum, choose the best podcast/lecture and then build up the hole course arounf these lectures and around the text-book. Around these two resources, he or sha can put in; Peer review, assesments, tutoring, multiple choices, group study/work, seminars with the teacher, guest teachers, wikies, blogs and sosial media.


Gráinne Conole
9:25am 23 November 2010

I've seen some nice examples of how podcasts have been used to give student feedback. Instead of them going straight for their grade they have to listen to the feedback first which is much better. When feedback is done in text students tend to look only at their grade and not really take in the details about what is wrong with their work. I know I was guilty of that with my spanish assignments!

Alan Winter
2:15pm 25 November 2010 (Edited 2:17pm 25 November 2010)


You have touched on exactly the way I want to start using podcasts. If students can access the lecture before the class we can spend more time discussing the key points. But I think it not only has to change the mindset of the has to change the mindset of the student, who would be required to participate much more, rather than be the recipient of lectures.

Derek Jones
3:52pm 30 November 2010

Svend (and all) very interesting and pertinent - especially relevant today. I can only concur wholeheartedly - information is nothing more than static 'stuff''. Putting it together to create a concept, knowledge, or to make something else is the good bit of education.

As a tutor with the OU, the information bit is already there - my role is something quite different to that of 'teacher of information'. So I have a responsibility to do different things with the presentation / demonstration / interpretation of that information - ultimately to see students self-realise the 'knowledge' that this information can allow.

Think about Feynman's lectures - these are not classic lectures because of their content (although it is relevant and important). They are classic lectures because of the way they are communicated, re-conceptualised, and even turned into entertainment (something I think we forget sometimes). Knowing the facts of QED helps, but 'seeing' the concept as described by the presenter turns it into something very different in your mind.

Sorry - bit off topic there :)

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