In recent years, the debate of podcasting as an educational tool has been debated. As mentioned by Professor Bruce Thorton in Getting their iLessons from the FresnoBee.com, "Learning is a human thing, and learning means humans getting together in the same place," he said. "It's looking at the face, getting the vibe from the inflection of the professor's voice, the gestures, the eyes, the live enthusiasm." Others feel students can receive information similarly through an ipod, smartphone, mp3 etc. Additionally, students can hit "play", "rewind" or "pause" at any time. For example, some students are parents and have responsibilities with their kids preventing perfect classroom attendance. In said scenario, tuning into a podcast and taking notes can make up for a missed class.
Podcasting can also be incredibly valuable for homework outside of class. Some teachers prefer to use class time for presentations or group discussions and don't have time for long lectures. Deborah L. Vess’ (2005), History to Go: Why iTeach with iPods states that, "There is also an advantage for students in that they can review podeasts, whereas classroom presentations are a more linear experience that students cannot repeat once they are completed. Another advantage of using podcasts is that class time is freed up for discussion and higher order learning activities. Although my course had only eight students in it, due to the intense discussions I demand of students, we could not complete eight presentations in a three-hour
session. The availability of the presentations on the podcasts before the class allowed us to focus on important issues, trends, and historiographical theories that otherwise might have gone unexplored." (pg.5)
I personally feel there must be a balance. At this stage, I still find considerable value in face to face lectures and in person conversation. However, I acknowledge and personally experience the flexibility podcasts provide people. As a Coach, it's imperative to stay current and educate myself on the most effective methods to teach.