Podcasts as an Educational Tool

By Steven Galvin - Last update


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Podcasting is a great way to distribute content these days and if we consider education to be the most important content there is, then podcasts are a perfect fit for school, colleges and universities. So in this article we wanted to look at the use of podcasts as an educational tool.

Podcasting in education can be used effectively in order to both increase accessibility to education and encourage student engagement. It is an ideal way to connect with students and enrich their learning experience.

Podcasting allows for educators to disseminate educational content, be that recorded lectures / tutorials / masterclasses / conferences / panels / events which students can then consume whenever and wherever they so choose. 

Many learning institutions have adopted podcasting into their education family and reaped the rewards. They are easy to create and are easy to consume so it seems an obvious fit when it comes to enhancing students’ learning experiences. 

Let’s take a look at some benefits of podcasting in education. 

Podcasts as an Educational Tool

Anytime, Anywhere

Because podcasts can be downloaded onto smartphones it means wherever you go, your podcasts go with you! Podcasts are accessible anytime, anywhere. This accessibility and convenience makes it the perfect tool for flexible/remote learning. 

A research paper compiled by Eddison research concluded that 

  • 51 percent of people listen to podcasts at home.
  • 22 percent of people listen to podcasts in their vehicle.
  • 14 percent of people listen to podcasts at work 
  • 40 percent of people listen to podcasts while on public transport.
  • 10 percent of people listen to podcasts in other places such as the gym

 

Engagement

Studies have shown that podcast listeners will give more time and attention to a podcast because they often consume them while doing something else that doesn’t require their attention – commuting, housework, walking etc . As a result it’s not uncommon for people to consume long podcasts and so choosing between watching a one-hour lecture online or listening to one while walking it’s easy to understand why a student would prefer the walk!

Missed Classes

Students can often miss a class. By making lectures available as a podcast, students will never miss out and always have access to the material they missed. 

Revision

Having a series of podcasts that are available to the student is a great resource for revision for the student. You have in fact created a complete archive that will prove invaluable for a student when preparing for assignments or exams or even just to go over the course again. So many lectures are lost in the ether so having a formally recorded and organised set of them in the form of a podcast series easily available to students is a huge benefit. Also it’s a fact that people like consuming knowledge in different ways and podcasts provide that.

Concentration

It can be difficult for some students to pay full attention for the duration of a lecture and can often miss chunks of information without meaning too. Having the material available as a podcast allows that student to return to the lecturer in their own time and fill in the gaps so to speak  and ensure that they get the most out of the lecture by catching what they may have missed earlier. 

Expand Education

Why not make podcasts from different subjects available to all students. I might be a Business Student but I would love to follow one of the history modules on the Arts degree. Making podcasts accessible to students this way allows them to experience subjects outside of their own learning journey and enhance their connection with other passions in their lives.


Steven Galvin

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