Podcasting

Zoomar

Image: Zoomar (Creative Commons Licence)

Our final assignment for EL6082: Learning and Collaboration Technologies, provides a choice of creating a podcast or a digital artefact (using MadCap Flare or similar software). I have considered both choices carefully and have decided to produce a podcast. Although, I would like to know how to create a digital artefact using MadCap Flare, I have a greater need for podcasting skills within my job. The assignment is due on the 21st April – just under three weeks. Our e-portfolio assignment is competing for time – I will try to get this assignment finished by Sunday, 9th April and focus on the e-portfolio for the rest of the month (due the 30th April).

The word podcasting is derived from the words ‘iPod’ and ‘broadcasting’ and refers to listening to audio files or viewing video on a portable device (Forbes and Hickey, 2008). Podcasting is easy to use in an educational context with minimal technical requirements (Edirisingha and Salmon, 2008). Edirisingha and Salmon (2008) found that students who listened to lecture podcasts reported that flexibility was an important feature of their learning experience. I have been listening to lecture podcasts throughout this MA and also find the flexibility of listening ‘anytime, anywhere’ beneficial to my learning experience.

My curiosity with podcasting started last semester when I undertook a research report on: Lecturers’ Experiences Of Teaching Online Using Podcasts: What are the Barriers to Using Podcasts within an Online Course? In this study I examined the literature relevant to lecturers’ experiences of teaching online; studies of podcasting at third-level; lecturers’ experiences of podcasting within their online courses.  I also conducted a ‘podcast usability study’, to investigate the reasons why lecturers had not used podcasts within their online courses.

Participants in my small study, demonstrated a lack of confidence and/or had bad experiences with technology in the past which put them off trying new technologies. The majority of the participants expected the process of recording and publishing a podcast to be complicated and believed they lacked the necessary technology skills. To their surprise, all participants found the process of creating and publishing a podcast straightforward. Everyone expressed a high level of satisfaction when they played back the podcast they produced during the usability test. Participants also indicated that they plan to include podcasts within their online courses in the future.

In this assignment, I must create a ten minute podcast on one of the following topics:

  1. An introduction to an aspect of your MA programme for beginners
  2. Instructional content on a particular process
  3. A topic that interests you (for example a hobby)

Option 3 is my automatic choice; I want to create a podcast about Open Education Resources (OERs). Throughout this semester, my awareness about OERs has increased, although, I have a lot to learn. This assignment will help bridge that learning gap. I also intend to include some information about the Domain of One’s Own (DoOO) project, which I’ve mentioned in earlier posts. The workshop with Jim Groom will take place at NUIG tomorrow; Student as Partner, Producer & Assessor: Exploring Domain of One’s Own. I’m really looking forward to it!

In accordance with the assignment brief, I hope I can provide sufficient information so that those who listen to my podcast ‘will have detailed knowledge of OERs by the end of the podcast’. Also, I would like to include this assignment as an artefact in my e-portfolio; it has to be good.

References

Edirisingha, P. and Salmon, G. (2008) ‘Doubling the life of iPod’ In Edirisingha, P. and Salmon G., eds., Podcasting for learning in universities, Maidenhead: Open University Press, McGraw-Hill Education, pp. 1 – 11.

Forbes, M.O. and Hickey, M.T. (2008) ‘Podcasting: Implementation and Evaluation in an Undergraduate Nursing Program’, Nurse Educator, 33(5), pp. 224–227.

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