Published: Jan. 12, 2022 By

ASSETT podcast channelI spent upwards of 20,000 minutes of 2021 listening to podcasts—and I’m proud of it. This is a habit I developed at the beginning of graduate school that converted the time I spent cleaning my apartment, cooking, and commuting from tedious to pleasing.

So when Professor Rachael Deagman Simonetta in the English Department reached out to the Student Technology Consultants team for help building a podcasting assignment for her course, I was thrilled to take it on. Imagine my excitement when I checked my phone after leaving Rachael’s office to see an additional podcasting assignment request from Dr. Emmy Herland from the Spanish and Portuguese Department.

Both instructors had the same end product—a podcasting assignment for their students in lieu of an essay—but very different end goals. In Rachael’s course, Writing for the Real World, students needed to develop the skills required to write podcast scripts, which is a common ask for her students when they enter the job market. Emmy’s course was focused on linguistic variations in Spanish, so the speaking component of the podcast was more important to her. Neither instructor really needed to focus on the audio quality or the artistry of the episodes themselves, like the media courses I’ve taken. Self-recording, editing audio, and building an episode was outside of the wheelhouses of many of these students, and they wouldn’t have much more time to devote to learning those steps than they would to writing an essay.

I needed to build an instructional system that was easy to understand and execute, consisted only of free technologies, and could scale to meet the experience level of individual students. I listed out all of the components I thought about when it came to creating and consuming podcasts and cut things away until I was left with three easy steps: recording, editing, and assembling. For each step, I made a short video, a written transcript, and optional steps if students wanted more of a challenge or further simplification. I put these all on the internet with the help of our web expert Ashley Lawhorn, and the Quick Podcasting Guide was born!

All of this happened after a single meeting with each professor and a few emails sent back and forth. Our Student Technology Consultants are eager to take on projects like this that empower instructors in Arts & Sciences to tackle new technologies and make the learning experience for CU students even more relevant and engaging.  This particular project clearly lined up with my own interests…and chances are whatever technology-driven project you’ve had simmering in the back of your brain will find a wonderful partner in one of our STCs. Let us help you make this semester’s instructional dream a reality without overwhelming your own bandwidth: request an STC today!