A podcast otherwise called netcast is an episodic series of audio or video files which a user can download in order to listen to. It is easy to create and view a podcast and all required are a computer, internet connection, and a recording device. Podcasting in the classroom has become the latest trend and most educational institutions are using podcasting in the classroom as it stimulates learning through creative means and opens lines of communications. The popular ways to use podcasts in the classroom includes
• Audio tours
• Guest speakers
• Podcast library
• Radio show
A closer look at podcasting can reveal the following benefits
Ease of accessibility: Podcasts enables students to access information at any time. They can also download the information to their device. A Tech-savvy student requires only basic technical skill and knowledge to download the podcasts.
Archive of lessons: Educators are able to record their classes and upload it online, creating an archive of lessons. This permits students to access previous lectures for reference and clarifications. This will help students who missed a particular lesson as they can access the information directly. Similarly, teachers can also post a lesson and make it available to the students.
Notify about updating: Users will be notified if there is an update if subscribed to a particular podcast. This enables easy sharing of information to all the members.
Learning on the go: Learning can occur even when a student is traveling. This can stimulate a different kind of learners as they can learn visually through videos and portable document formats, auditory through audio clips. Hence learners are motivated to learn and excel.
Creative learning: Podcasting give ways to new learning strategies like invited lectures, interviews, video demonstrations and others, unlike traditional learning. This enhances a student's learning by targeting on that student's interest.
If not monitored podcasting can be misused by its users, but there is no doubt that this will push students to collaborate in authentic ways and have an academic conversation around the podcasted material. For an educator it could be a unique way of engaging learners.