Professor Domingo Morel designed his spring 2016 course, The Politics of Inequality in America, to help students understand the political causes and consequences of inequality in America, particularly within the American education system. He also wanted to give his students the opportunity to learn about inequality from a perspective that may not be covered in the course. To that end, he asked students to work in groups to produce podcast episodes based on original content and research. The podcast episode format also allowed the students to share what they learned, both in terms of content and technologically, with their classmates throughout the semester, and with a broader audience once the episodes were completed.
The research project design allowed the students to use and center diverse voices, collaborate and critique each other’s research, and have an impact beyond the classroom, all while maintaining academic rigor.
Collaborations with RIS staff included collaborative brainstorming to design the assignment and class visits. These visits included short sessions around research resources, storyboards, and podcast styles; a whole class session for technical instruction; and a series of workshopping sessions where student groups presented their progress, ideas, and questions and received feedback from their classmates, Sarah, Rebecca, & Professor Morel. While class sessions were helpful, the workshop critiques were especially effective. They provided project milestones and the opportunity for everyone to learn from comments and advice, not just for their own project, but for everyone’s.
Faculty: Domingo Morel
LTS Staff: Rebecca Darling, Sarah Barbrow
Keywords: podcast, politics, inequality