Culture

Spotify and NYU partner up for podcast course this winter

From brainstorming sessions to figuring out which editing software works best, this course is for podcast fiends.

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Podcast popularity isn't just limited to recreational listening while doing the dishes or commuting to work. Now classrooms are looking into providing podcast courses for students to understand the medium better and even come up with their pitches.

One such course is taking off at the New York University in partnership with streaming giant Spotify. Titled "Podcasting and Audio Storytelling," this course between NYU and Spotify boasts experts from the WNYC Studios as well as Vox who will guide students through the process of coming up with the perfect pitch, how to carry a persuasive and engrossing interview with different guests, how audio works, the power of cross-platform storytelling, and other project-based learning, which is already taking off beyond college campuses.

What you should know — The three-week intensive program is expected to run this winter at the university for undergraduates. The online course has no prerequisites, which will make many students happy. In addition to creating pitches and making sure the podcast is sustainable and distributed widely (you don't want it to crash and crumble after two episodes), students will also have a chance to grasp the economic side of podcasts: markets, trends, emerging and fading topics, genres that can be tapped into or out of, and how exactly episodes can be monetized through sponsorships and other funding avenues.

"Students will propose new shows at the start of the course, and refine their ideas in light of the information imparted by the speakers," the course primer notes. "By the end of the course, students will have produced 5-10 minutes of their show, whether an episode or a trailer. Participants will also have the opportunity to be considered for Spotify’s summer 2021 paid internship program in partnership with NYU."

As it stands, podcasts are already used in classrooms in the form of running lectures, providing an archive of lessons to students whenever they need it, increasing creative learning that opens pupils to guest speeches and interviews, and encourages them to participate in discussions and debates outside of the traditional pedagogic methods.

With NYU and Spotify's partnered course, students will get the chance to go behind the scenes, so to speak, and use the mic for themselves. Given that the program is fluid and open to different genres, it will be interesting to watch students come up with their own episodes and trailers. We're just hoping it's something other than true crime. (No offense.)