Despite the great success I was having podcasting with my university students, I hadn’t made much effort to introduce the idea to my adult business classes, being put off by the numerous obstacles I imagined would come up. While some students admit to being tech addicts, there are others who happily leave all thoughts of internet and computers behind them as they close the office door at the end of the working day. Even if I could tempt them to give podcasting a shot, the tool I usually use requires a log in, which for some people is a deterrent.
Then I happened upon Vocaroo.com – the perfect solution! This site lets you record and share voice messages over the internet in a variety of ways. No software downloads or log ins needed.
Once you have recorded your message, you can listen to it and re-record it if you’re not satisfied. When ready, save it and share.
On Vocaroo.com I recorded a message for the group outlining their homework task and played it at the end of class. Their job was to record themselves talking about the topic, which I chose depending on what we were working on at the time. In one class I asked students to talk about an experience they had speaking in front of an audience, as presentations was the topic coming up next in their course book.
I gave a few options as to what they could do with their recorded message.
- Record it, listen to it and reflect on how they could improve.
- Email me the finished recording for one to one feedback.
- Allow me to share the recording with the class (for discussion on content) once I had given one to one feedback.
I asked them to share it via email as I felt that was the easiest for everybody. I also recommended that they each download their message as the site states that the recordings will not be saved indefinitely. The students may enjoy listening to themselves again in the future, hopefully marvelling at the progress they’ll have made in the meantime!
So far, the podcasting experiment has worked very well. I found that some students, in particular those who I’ve worked with for a while, were more confident about sharing their finished recordings than others and were eager to discuss the experience with the group. Everyone, even those who hadn’t made or shared a recording, got something out of the exercise and I felt slightly guilty that I had rejected the idea of podcasting with business groups for so long.
Vocaroo has helped me see the error of my ways and allows me to podcast merrily from classroom to boardroom!