Education with Podcasts
By S. Housley
Schools all over the country have flocked to podcasting
as a new medium to assist the teaching profession. Professors are
using podcasts to instruct students and get their messages out.
Podcasting is not restricted to one educational sector, professors
at prestigious colleges from Bentley to Purdue have flocked to this
A growing number of professors are recording their
lectures, the term coursecasting has been adopted in academia. Podcast
lectures are used as study tools, and are available for students
who might have missed class. Some podcasts are password restricted
to students who are enrolled in that specific class. While other
institution's publicly post their podcasts and offer non-enrolled
students insight into the class material.
Why has podcasting been embraced by the educational
field? The adoption of RSS is likely in part due to the demographic
higher-education attraction. Most college students are young and
well educated. Because of their age the students have embraced technology,
they have always had technology as a component to their life. This
demographic have grown up with computers their entire lives, technology
has always been an integral tool in their education.
Bentley initially adopted podcasting in the course
IT 101, to introduce students to the concepts of technology as they
relate to business, ethics and social responsibility, global commerce
and culture. Students are not only required to listen to podcasts,
but also to produce their own podcasts. Bentley, understanding the
importance, influence and power of technology felt that students
would benefit by obtaining a complete and thorough understanding
of the podcasting medium.
Certain subject material lends itself to podcasting
more than others, for example: foreign language lessons are ideal
for podcasts because students can listen to accents, intonations,
and speech patterns. Students listening to foreign language podcasts
are able to hear and experience the language outside of the classroom.
Some educators are using videocasts to demonstrate
science labs and experiments. The portability of the videocasts
make it easier for students to review labs, when critically analyzing
Educators are known for their philanthropy and desire
to share their knowledge. Technology and podcasting as a communication
medium have made it easier for educators to collaborate, share and
provide material in a portable format. Podcasting allows professors
to extend their reach outside the classroom. With the hectic pace
today's students keep between classes, commuting and employment,
podcasts fit, allowing students to maximize their commute and use
their time efficiently while juggling it all. Just as home computers
have become an integral tool in the educational field, todays hectic
lifestyles make the need for educational podcasts and videocasts
only more evident.
Additional Resources: How Podcasts and RSS
are Used in Education http://www.small-business-software.net/rss-and-academics.htm
Locate Educational Feeds
Educational Feeds - http://www.educational-feeds.com
Educational Podcast Network - http://www.epnweb.org/
About the Author:
Sharon Housley manages marketing for FeedForAll http://www.feedforall.com
software for creating, editing, publishing RSS feeds and podcasts.
In addition Sharon manages marketing for RecordForAll http://www.recordforall.com
audio recording and editing software.