Beyond podcasting: creative approaches to designing educational audio
This paper discusses a university-wide pilot designed to encourage academics to creatively explore learner-centred applications for digital audio. Participation in the pilot was diverse in terms of technical competence, confidence and contextual requirements and there was little prior experience of working with digital audio. Many innovative approaches were taken to using audio in a blended context including student-generated vox pops, audio feedback models, audio conversations and task-setting. A podcast was central to the pilot itself, providing a common space for the 25 participants, who were also supported by materials in several other formats. An analysis of podcast interviews involving pilot participants provided the data informing this case study. This paper concludes that audio has the potential to promote academic creativity in engaging students through media intervention. However, institutional scalability is dependent upon the availability of suitable timely support mechanisms that can address the lack of technical confidence evident in many staff. If that is in place, audio can be widely adopted by anyone seeking to add a new layer of presence and connectivity through the use of voice.
Keywords: podcasting; digital audio; transformation; creativity; innovation