Education Technology

Podcasts Increasing in Popularity

Official Definition
Podcast: a Web-based audio broadcast via an RSS feed, accessed by subscription over the Internet.

Easier To Understand
Podcast: an audio file which you can download and listen to.

A couple of years back, not everyone knew what podcasts were, and perhaps now it is still not the case but it is obvious that their popularity is increasing very rapidly. While your tech savvy user probably is familiar with the term, it does not mean they are actually using them. By using them, I mean not just downloading the podcasts and listening to them in your computer, but doing what you are actually supposed to. Put them in your iPod or MP3 player and listen to them on the go.

However, this is about to change. Soon everyone will be using podcasts more and more on the go. A big step towards this is the increasing number of uses that are being found for podcasts. From radio shows, to interviews, to the latest and perhaps what maybe the best use thought of…college lectures.

As more students find out about the possibility of having lectures in podcasts, the number of courses offering this should increase. The first and most obvious benefit would be that, you could actually stay home if you didn’t feel like going to school and listen to the professor. But even better than this, is listening to the lectures while using mass transit.

If you happen to live in New York City and have to take the subway, train or the bus for an hour or more, you will find it more than useful to be able to listen to a lecture while traveling, rather than reading the book while your bus/train/whatever is moving. First of reading in a bus is uncomfortable and can damage your eyes due to constant focus change (ok im no expert at this but Its what I believe, correct me if I’m wrong). If reading, it is also hard to concentrate due to all the noise around you, whereas when you are listening to the podcast at max volume it will ease things for you.

If students are offered the ability to have lectures in podcasts I’m more than positive their performance will increase, leading to better grades. Colleges will be able to up their overall GPA so this is a two way street. Both colleges and their students will benefit greatly once podcasts start being used more and more. Oh hey, did I mention you can put it on repeat and listen to it while you are sleeping? You are guaranteed to remember your lecture material then!!!

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