Spotlight: Podcasting Bootcamp Intersession Course

Tom Teaching Podcasting

Culled from the article “Podcast Away” on the Hub, written by Jacob DeNobel.

When Joan Freedman began hosting podcasting workshops at the Digital Media Center, few students were active listeners and fewer still were interested in putting together their own.

Then Serial was released.

The investigative journalism podcast, which debuted in 2014 and explored the murder of a Baltimore-area high school student, became a nationwide sensation. The first season garnered more than 68 million downloads in its first year. For many, Serial served as an introduction to the medium.

As more students became interested in creating their own, JHU’s Digital Media Center began catering to the wave of aspiring podcasters. The audio studio was converted into a podcasting space, and specialty podcast kits were assembled for rental.

Now the Digital Media Center hosts regular workshops and courses in podcast production, including a Podcast Bootcamp during Intersession. Freedman said the accelerated course is a convenient way to give students the tools they need to start recording podcasts on their own.

“Students want to try new and exciting things during Intersession,” Freedman said. “We thought the idea of a bootcamp was the best way to utilize student time.”

In the four-day course, students pitch a podcast idea, create an audio introduction, and record and edit a full episode. Kyle Stine, who who designed and teaches the academic portion of the class, said because of the brief timeframe of the bootcamp, students are encouraged to come up with a high concept that can be summed up in a single sentence and executed quickly.

Amanda Yuen, a first-year international studies and anthropology major, decided on a podcast idea that can practically be summed up by its name—12 Voices. In each episode, Yuen would ask 12 different people the same question and see how they each respond. For her Intersession project, she’s asking people to tell her about their first kiss.

“I’m an anthropology major, so I wanted to see the ways podcasts can interact with that,” Yuen said. “I listen to a lot of podcasts, and I was curious about trying to do one myself.”

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