Capturing Learning: Audio
This is the second, of a series of posts, on approaches to capturing learning both in and out of the classroom.
The post focuses on capturing learning using audio.
Audio: What it is?
- When you are: discussing a key topic; feeding back important information; offering advice ahead of exams; marking coursework or creating important revision material, one of the best ways to record the key information is recording your own voice. However, when teachers are suggested to trial this method, often the reply is “I don’t like the sound of my own voice!”…..but, how many people per day hear that voice? 10? 100? 300? Honestly, once you’ve done it once, you’ll conquer that fear!
Audio: How to do it – from a device
- There are many different ways to record audio
- From a basic, free app or program on a phone, to a full out recording studio
- Budgets can be from pence to thousands of pounds
- However, it’s important to remember – it’s the content which is valuable, not the equipment
- Have a look on your phone for an application or program which says ‘memo’ ‘voice record’ or something similar
- There are many different formats that it may record in. Some are easy to transfer, others not so. The hard ones to transfer will need to be formatted in to another file type
- At school, we have apps on the iPods and iPads to record audio from
- Once completed, you’ll be able to ask the AV team to remove the content from the devices and share them locally
Audio: How to do it – from a computer
- Nearly every laptop I’ve ever seen has a microphone built in to it
- Normally, a little hole around the monitor somewhere
- Although this will allow you to record audio, the quality will not always be too great
- A cheap microphone will suffice for your first attempts, but if it’s something that you want to develop further, a USB microphone is highly recommended. We’ve got one in school (a Samson) that costs about £25. The quality is really good.
- Download the programme Audacity. It’s a really easy to use tool that publishes very high quality audio files in the MP3 (a common audio file type) format
- From there, you can trim / edit / cut the audio soundtrack and export to MP3
Audio: Things to remember
- Many programs allow you to edit away mistakes. For example, in 2012, we had to record over 200 audio clips for Intel. Whenever we made a mistake, we started from the sentence again – knowing we’d be able to go back and delete the part where the error occurred
- For best quality, record in a quiet room
- Export in a common audio format (MP3 is probably best for starting out)
- Save somewhere where it’s easy for students to get the file. The VLE or student network both offer this
- Don’t worry about your voice! It sounds exactly the same as when you normally talk…
Audio: Further links
- Recording using iPads / iPods
- Download Audacity from here. It’s already installed on your PCs in school
Audio: Possible uses
- Recording a key topic
- Letting students record their homework
- Preparing for an exam
- Giving feedback for homework1