Podcasting explained

 By Laura E Cox

Podcasting is a love child of audio journalism, which has increased in popularity with the digital phenomenon of the blog.

It takes its name from the iPod platform, and the term ‘podcasting’ is intended to rhyme with ‘broadcasting’.

Podcasting makes it possible to take audio on the move, and is therefore very popular with small business entrepeneurs.

It also makes access very easy for an audience, increasing the liklihood that your message will be heard.

Podcasts are really designed with the audience in mind. Everything is about ease of access and being aware of the increasingly busy lifestyle of the population. If a broadcast can be listened to whilst the listener is doing something else, then that can only increase your potential market.

According to The Home Business Professor, “The process requires little more than a computer with an internet connection, a microphone, and software to record, edit and compress the audio.

Once that is done, the next step is to publish your podcast on a website and create a feed your listeners can subscribe to.”

Have a look at the website of your favourite website. They will have podcasts available to listen to.

Some can be streamed (listened to without downloading) and others can be downloaded (sometimes only for a limited period, and meaning that it is available on your computer).

As technology evolves, so does its marketability. Podcasts are a perfect example of this: you can now learn languages through podcasts, turning it into a truly interactive experience, with the user at the centre.

Have a look at Daily French Pod, which builds up a community by offering french lessons via podcast. They are available for all levels of ability.

If you fancy having a go at making your own podcast, this website can be very useful.

There are all sorts of things you can do with a podcast. Here is Will Richardson’s lists of ideas:

  • Collect field notes during a science field trip
  • Living museum, researching characters
  • “Radio shows”
  • Creating audio guides for local museums
  • Teacher powerpoints
  • Early language learners, (rhyming, etc.)
  • Staff development
  • Screencasts
  • Language learners recording assessments
  • Discovery Education videos
  • Science reports
  • Art projects
  • Digital portfolios
  • Weekly classroom news
  • Serial storytelling
  • Reflective journals
  • Summaries of school events
  • Broadcast school sporting events
  • Roving reporters
  • Capturing oral histories (family history)
  • Podcast vocab words and spelling lists
  • Flashcard practice with iFlash
  • Musical compositions
  • Soundseeing tours

About Laura

Small fish in a big pond, trying to accept life on life's terms 'You can never cross the ocean until you have the courage to lose sight of the shore' - Christopher Columbus
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