Podcasting in Education: What Are the Benefits?

Podcasting in EducationNew technology always has a heavy impact on education, and Podcasting is no different. Many learning institutions are cutting back on textbooks and investing in technology enhanced learning and podcasting is one of the forefront technologies in this change. Podcasting in education offers people the opportunity to easily send and receive multimedia content, whether audio or video. A student only needs to subscribe to a podcast feed and suddenly they’ll be pushed educational content to whatever device they choose. Podcasts can easily be used in Schools, universities or colleges to engage students, and improve your teaching and learning practise.

Many learning institutions which have incorporated podcasting in their education system, have reported really positive results. This can be attributed to the ease of creating and consuming podcasts as well as the various ways in which education podcasts enhance the students’ learning experience. There are numerous advantages of education podcasts which you can explore below, or sign up for a podcasting space today:

Flexible Availability – 24 hours a Day

One of the greatest advantages of education podcasts is the portability and convenience they offer. Podcasts can be downloaded to almost any kind of mobile device, allowing the student to access the learning resources anytime, anywhere without too much effort. This makes podcasts very convenient and also paves the way for truly flexibile learning.

Student Created Content

One of the most interesting and valuable uses of Podcasting in Education is the concept of student created content. You can allow students to create their own podcasts of short questions, discussions, presentations or projects and make them available to their classmates. This encourages engagement in the material, allowing students to take control of a little aspect of their education. They can question, the can contribute and they can teach each other.

Lecture Review

Simply making podcasts of your existing lectures makes them easily accessible by students and creates invaluable study aids. Students can use the podcasts for reference purposes or when preparing themselves for upcoming examinations. Any student who had challenges understanding a topic in the classroom can listen to this podcast, study and understand the topic at his own pace. This is particularly valuable to students from an international background or with learning difficulties.

Make up for Missed Classes

When a student misses a class, it’s not always because they’re lazy. Using podcasts, a sick student who has missed a number of classes can download recordings of the lectures and thus is able to “fill in the gaps”. Moreover, a lecturer who is unable to attend his or her classes can make a podcast of the lecture available to the students and thus make up for the unattended lectures.

Reusability & Repurposing

Recording a lecture and then offering that podcast to the student helps a lecturer or professor to ensure that all points pertaining to a certain topic are well covered. This comes in handy when the lecturer in question teaches multiple sessions of the same class. It helps the lecturer to ensure that all his students get the same information and to cover the syllabus uniformly.

Benefits for Mental and Visual Impairments

Perhaps one of the greatest pedagogic characteristics offered by educational podcasting is the chance to learn through listening. To many people of the current student generation, learning through listening is enjoyable and less tedious than reading. Educational podcasts are appealing and may encourage students who don’t like reading. Many students actually struggle with reading through mental impairments, and podcasts can be a huge aid to this. Podcasts are equally useful in cases where visual impairment makes traditional learning methods arduous.

Using podcasts in your teaching can help you encourage your students to engage with your classes, your material and never miss a thing. Podcasting is one of the best things you could do for your students, so why not have a go today!

If you want to learn more about how to get started in Podcasting, check out our How to Podcast guide.

If you’d like to try out a Podcasting space with The Podcast Host, sign up for a free podcasting trial today.

Image Credit: powerbooktrance on Flickr

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About the author: Colin Gray

Colin has been teaching people how to podcast since 2007. He's worked with Universities, businesses and hobbyists alike. He started The Podcast Host to share his experience and to help as many people as possible get into Podcasting. He runs Podcraft, to spread the art of podcasting, and does the Mountain Bikes Apart podcast whenever he can. Who doesn't like to talk bikes, after all!