Saturday, June 4, 2011

PODCAST (session 6)

One of the advantages of using the Internet is that it gives us wide possibilities to easily access genuine resources and material. Such resources can have a big value in the EFL class as they may be used for many purposes, for instance, developing great and interactive classes with activities such as debating, discussions of topics, work projects among other motivating tasks.

A device that has become a great source of authentic material to use in listening activities is the podcast. Podcasts have a number of advantages because of their authenticity and suitability. Language teachers may create them to suit their class needs.
Podcast is a blended word formed by the combination of the I-Pod (audio player) and broadcast from TV and radio. It is a computer radio file. The most common file is MP3. (Sharma & Barrett, 2007)

For downloading a podcast we need a broad band internet connection. And, though they take authenticity (real life) to the class, to create one is not a task for an elementary computer user(Sharma & Barrett, 2007). Fundamental items of equipment are required. Two of those items are a sound card and a microphone.

Podcast formats vary. They may be presentations, monologues, interviews, dialogues, etc. As it has been stated before, teachers may choose their formats based on their class needs.

In the TEFL field there may be a lot of reasons to use podcast. First, podcasts provide listening practice that is tailored to the learner’s needs. Second, they can benefit learners who are more aural than visual in their learning styles. Next, they can provide with models of pronunciation and accent for those who do not have opportunities for foreign language exposure, among other reasons.

The experience of creating a podcast in the ICT in TEFL course has been somehow daunting . Authorities that support the use of technology in education are right when they say that creating such type of file is not a task for elementary computer users. Actually, just looking at the panel of programs such as audacity and the like may be a little intimidating. One may start thinking that this is a task for a sound engineer. However, once we start experimenting with the features of the program, we find out that creating a podcast is not that difficult. I indeed got excited to the point of wanting to create my own sound files for my ESP classes. Of course, I am still in the process of experimentation with the panel of audacity.

My first Podcast

My Podbean blog


  1. I absolutely agree about the tough task of creating a podcast for this course. When I saw the instrument panel of Audacity by the first time, I thought in the instrument panel of an Airbus 380 but when I began to explore the different functions and buttoms, I realized that it was not so difficult.

  2. Hi Cesar. I agree with you. Podcasting is a very complex task, not only because of the features that the control panel displays at first sight, but also because of the relative difficulty of recording to sound natural. So my question is: do you really think that podcasting conveys authenticity? Do you consider that people who podcast need to be trained on this matter first?

  3. Well! Let me tell you that If I had not had the opportunity to receive certain training on the use of that, like the basic trainig we received in this ICT course, I would have given more than a thought to this idea of creating a podcast. I don't think designing or creating a podcast is as authentic as many claim. Just thinking of this factor of trying to calculate many variables to sound natural or perfect takes authenticity away. To use podcast we certainly need certain training, though there are self-taught people who are risk takers and would not be deterred in trying to use it without training

  4. Very interesting topic Cesar. Good job!!!