Podcast as learning tool at UofA

While reading the Edmonton Journal newspaper (yes I still read hard-copy) this morning over coffee I came across this article featuring how some University of Alberta medical students are using podcasts to learn about their subjects. What was unique about what they were doing is how they turn their dry academic medical information into pop songs. Kind of like a Weird Al remake of popular songs but they rhyme medical jargon. It’s been very successful for the students – a half-million downloads from YouTube for one example.

What are my take aways from this?

It’s something done by the students for the students – grassroots driven.

It was supported and encouraged by a faculty member – who is speaking at an upcoming eLearning conference and believes most academics haven’t learned yet how to employ the podcast medium. Innovative and creative.

One student was employed to convert long recorded lectures into “sound-byte” podcasts.

It’s shared with the community via YouTube.

Using pop culture as a learning tool – learning through song and rhyme is not a new technique but in this case cultural relevance and current technology is key.

There was mention of an upcoming conference on eLearning .

Dean

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