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Audio Storytelling
LFS 400
Instructor: Will Valley, FNH 210
Duncan McHugh, MCML 266

Office Hours:
Class Schedule: Course:LFS400/Schedule
Important Course Pages
Lecture Notes
Course Discussion

This course teaches you to use audio technology and a journalistic framework in order to tell powerful stories and present academic content in new ways. It is a seminar course with a lot of personal attention, critical feedback and weekly lab-based work. By the end of the term, students will have the ability to share their knowledge in effective and creative ways.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, the students will be able to:

  • Synthesize information to form an original personal narrative or a story;
  • Apply technological tools to convey their content in podcast format;
  • Develop media literacy for critical engagement with disciplinary knowledge.

During this course, students will learn to:

  • Apply critical and creative thinking skills in the collection and analysis of information;
  • Compare different channels and purposes of journalistic communication (e.g., traditional media outlets, social networks);
  • Integrate discipline specific knowledge in powerful messages through 'humanizing the content';
  • Understand the basic mechanics of creating a message for a purpose (e.g., story for emotional engagement, dissemination, awareness building, advocacy, news etc.);
  • Develop skills to effectively critique their own and peers' work;
  • Give and receive meaningful feedback

Course Requirements

Active participation in the class and completion of all assignments by the deadlines indicated in the course schedule is required.

Assignment Descriptions

See Course:LFS400/Assignments


Assignment Weight
Streeter (1 min) 10%
Voicer (1:30 mins) 10%
Project Outline 10%
Group piece 10%
Draft podcast 10%
Final podcast 25%
Post-podcast Reflection 15%
Participation 10%

Course Schedule

See Course:LFS400/Schedule

Topics and Intellectual Territory Flow

  1. Course introduction
  2. General Journalism and Storytelling
  3. Interview Skills
  4. Journalist, Citizen journalist, or Advocate? It all depends on your purpose
  5. Podcast Story Construction and Paper edit Plan/Story Boarding
  6. Technology 'platforms' and Communication/Traditional Media Outlets vs. Social
  7. Networks: Implications, Advantages and Disadvantages; Using Data
  8. Visualization Tools to Support your Message
  9. Media Relations and Message Positioning

Podcast Grading Rubric

See Course:LFS400/Podcast_Grading_Rubric

General Podcast Production Process Steps

See Course:LFS400/Podcast_Production_Steps