E-Learning Podcasts for Online Learning

Education Podcasts in E-Learning (#39): Challenge | Recap

I've always been a big fan of audio podcasts for everything from learning to entertainment. One of my favorite audio projects comes from StoryCorps. Specializing in capturing oral history, StoryCorps travels around the country setting up MobileBooths—recording studios housed in Airstream trailers.

They invite pairs of people to interview each other for 40 minutes about the most important moments in their lives. StoryCorps keeps a copy and provides participants a CD copy of the interview. They even offer a free Do-It-Yourself Instruction Guide for capturing and recording your own interviews.

While their focus is on storytelling and oral history, there’s plenty of interviewing techniques course designers can apply to their own training projects.

So I thought it’d be interesting in our challenge this week to switch gears from a visual focus, and instead play with our audio sense to design a podcast.

Challenge of the week

This week your challenge is to record your answers to the following 10 interview questions:

E-Learning Podcast Interview Questions:

  1. Tell us a little about yourself and the types of e-learning projects you most enjoy.
  2. How did you become an e-learning or instructional designer?
  3. What are the essentials of good e-learning design?
  4. Tell me about your most successful e-learning project.
  5. What are the most important criteria in evaluating e-learning?
  6. What are some common mistakes new course designers make and how can they avoid them?
  7. How is designing mobile learning different than designing for the desktop?
  8. How do you evaluate whether your course was effective?
  9. How do you keep up your skills and stay current in the industry?
  10. What is the future of e-learning?

Save each audio clip as its own file. Use a naming convention that makes it easy to identify each audio file to the corresponding question. You can use numbers (1-10) or any format that works best for you.

In the comments section or on your own blog, link to each of your 10 audio clips. I’ll compile each of your questions into an interactive audio project.


You can use Articulate Storyline, Articulate Studio, Audacity, or any other audio recording program to record your podcast.

Last week’s challenge

Before you sound off in this week’s challenge, check out the amazing game templates your fellow community members shared in last week’s template challenge:

More about the e-learning  challenges:

The weekly challenges are ongoing opportunities to learn, share, and build your e-learning portfolios. You can jump into any or all of the previous challenges anytime you want. We’ll feature your work and provide feedback if you request it.

Wishing you a safe and sound week, E-Learning Heroes!

Even if you’re using a trial version of Studio ’13 or Storyline, you can absolutely publish your challenge files. Just sign up for a fully functional, free trial, and have at it. And remember to post your questions and comments in the forums; we're here to help. For more e-learning tips, examples, and downloads, follow us on Twitter.

Nancy Woinoski
Daniel Sweigert

Tim - I love your templates. Thanks for sharing your experiences and ideas. Allison - Very nicely done. On one of your points, I had a Biology instructor who put just about every word he was going to say on a PowerPoint presentation. He had no idea why his students were pulling their hair out. Ashley - Great point about no e-learning evaluation. I think some people get so caught up in the new technology, they can't see the forest for the trees. Nick - Yours was such a fun listen, love your voices! I agree that someone has to make the final decisions or you end up with the most bloated, inefficient piece of work possible. Also great point about the gaming industry's influence on the future of e-learning. Nicholas - As Jackie mentioned, I had the same problem you did. You need to un-cli... Expand

Nicholas Sargent
Jackie Van Nice
Ashley Chiasson

Finally found some time to listen to folks! I still can’t get over how I thought people would sound versus how they actually did :P Dan - I totally agree with the range of creativity between ILT and E-Learning. The job-aid aspect of mobile learning was one of the reasons I looooved working on Electronic Performance Support Systems - Job aids and visual demos all in one place! Nicholas - screen captures are amazing resources; I do these and screencasts for faculty members at the university I work within - they’re very busy and aren’t always tech savvy, so they need the explanation and then the visual walkthrough for context. Dana - The overzealousness often gets overwhelming as a developer, so it’s always important to step back and recognize why you’re developing e-learning the way... Expand

Richard Watson

Okay... Here is my submission for this week's challenge! It has a "southern" flair so if you need me to translate anything just let me know. :) By the way, this is the reason I prefer to subcontract our my voice-over needs! :) To complete the challenge, I wrote simple scripts for each question and included key points I wanted to cover. After scripting, I used a Samson GO MIC to record the tracks via Audacity, Camtasia Studio to level the audio and remove dead space from the beginning and end of each track, and then exported as MP3s. From there, I located and installed a plug-in for SoundCloud, which allowed me to present the podcast directly from my website, performed just a dash of CSS customization and shaazam.... it's ready. @David: If you decide to use the files for your pro... Expand

Richard Watson