"There's Something in the Air: Podcasting in Education"

I’m at the 2005 EDUCAUSE convention and getting ready for tomorrow’s pre-conference workshop on digital assets management. I’m also looking forward to a reunion with some friends–friends I didn’t know just two years ago, when I first came to EDUCAUSE.

I’ve already heard from one of those friends, Bryan Alexander, who tells me the advance copies of the Nov./Dec. EDUCAUSE Review are in the convention registration packets. I have an essay on podcasting in this issue. (Hence the title of this blog post.) Editor Teddy Diggs and I thought it would be fun to podcast the article on podcasting, so here’s the audio version of my essay.

I very much enjoyed writing and podcasting this essay. The subject is near and dear to my heart, and Teddy was a great editor to work with: sharp, funny, humane, and vigilant. She coped very well with my desire to try to stay ahead of the news just as podcasting went mainstream with iTunes. Since the article went to bed in mid-September, Yahoo has come on board, and Apple has introduced its video iPod. I considered putting the late-breaking news into the podcast, but I wanted the audio version to be as close as possible to the print version so that the experiences could be compared more directly. I think and hope there’s enough analysis and musings in the article that it will be interesting and perhaps valuable even in the midst of rapidly evolving circumstances.

I found it harder to do the podcast than I had expected. It’s a longish piece–it runs about 50 minutes read aloud–and I wanted to do it all in one go as much as I could, rather than recording it in sections. That took some stamina, and I ended up with several complete takes that have quite different characters. In the end I went for something gentle instead of a more upbeat approach. I wanted the gentleness to carry both excitement and thoughtfulness. We’ll see if I got anywhere near. Comments are welcome, as always. I’m particularly curious about how the print and audio experiences compare; if you do both, let me know what you think. The print issue will be online next week, I imagine.

Thanks, Teddy, and thanks to Bart Prater of WROV Roanoke, the best radio teacher I ever had. Thanks too to my family, who gave up many hours of gaming, NeoPets, TV, and computer access so that I could wrestle my Rode NT1-A into submission and get a version I could live with.


14 thoughts on “"There's Something in the Air: Podcasting in Education"

  1. I’ve been listening to you for a while now; sorry I haven’t contacted you sooner. I really enjoyed your podcasting essay. I’ve heard few explainations of podcasting that are in depth yet easy to understand. I hope a lot of educators have a chance to hear it.

    Rusty Bender
    Strange Brain Radio

  2. As someone who is in the final stage of teaching a course which contains student-produced (and my) podcasts (iGeneration, if you’re interested) I struck a complete void when trying to find material on academic podcasting present and future. Your article fills the void impressively. Nicely written, too.

  3. Pingback: The Ten Thousand Year Blog » Blog Archive » Podcaasting in education article in Educause Review

  4. One of the best article on the pedagogy and process of podcasting in education. Thank you for sharing your work.

  5. Gardner, hello from the UK – good to hear a view of the (very near) future from the colonies 🙂 (That should raise a response!)

    Actually this come from Wales so please forgive us for the acts of our English neighbours.

    Great stuff. I am looking to explore these ‘new’ mediums in my own delivery (I teach in a small HE institution) – but what I really want to do is get my students USING this in their own exploration of self-discovery and learning.

    Thank you

  6. Wouldn’t want to disappoint a Welshman, Clive. Thanks for those kind words, but even more for the promise of what you and your students will create together. I’ll be listening.

  7. I’ve just started Podcast Awareness courses at Mid-Cheshire College (an F.E. college in the UK) telling teachers what podcasts are (most still have no idea) and what the possible implications are for education. I give lots of handouts – but pride of place is your ‘Something in the Air’ essay – what an excellent introduction for anyone who wants to know how this exciting resource can be used for teaching and learning. Just to make sure that I knew what I was talking about I started my own music podcast (Darkhorse Radio) – now I’m very involved with producing weekly episodes – this thing is addictive!
    Thanks very much for helping put the whole thing into an educational perspective – and there’s your audio version too – excellent.

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