I teach an introductory global history course for first-year undergraduates at the University of Minnesota. I have been teaching introductory history courses for nearly four decades. One of the learning activities that has most engaged the students are history simulations. While I use a varied learning pedagogy, the most meaningful learning events for the students according to them are the simulations. The students say that it is taking on the role of another country or group and engaging in highly-energized negotiations with two other groups leads to the following outcomes: active learning like this is most meaningful, develop understanding of different perspectives of other countries and groups, and development of personal negotiation skills they will use in personal and future professional life. <Click here for the history simulation web page.>
Click on this link to read a handout I prepared on podcasts related to history that I have subscribed for free through the iTunes Podcast service. I do not claim to listen to all the episodes obviously. However, I go through and select episodes of particular interest. I do make sure to download all episodes and went into the settings for my podcasts so that past episodes that are played do not automatically become deleted. Apple does that by default so that your hard drive is not becoming overloaded with media that you may not ever play again. While this is not a big issue with most audio podcasts, some video podcasts have enormous file sizes simply because it takes more room to provide them. Several of my personal favorites are the video podcasts from NASA. If you subscribe to the HD quality video podcasts, individual episodes can exceed 200 MB. Fortunately, most recent personal computers are increasingly providing standard hard drives of a terabyte or more. As a history teacher, I like to keep all the episodes for future reference. I think of them as my personal library like some people like to collect movie DVDs.
In 2013, Apple reported that a billion people world-wide have subscribed to a quarter-million podcasts in 100 languages, and that more than eight million episodes have been published in the iTunes Store thus far. Searching for podcasts through the iTunes Store can be a challenge. The following list is merely a sample of the history podcasts. They were enough of an interest to me to subscribe.
Many of the podcast shows can be subscribed to through iTunes, Google Play Store, and other mediasubscription services. Since I am most familiar with the Apple media ecosystem, the following podcasts are available through the Apple iTunes store. These are identified by the iTunes name appearing in the title line for the podcast. Formal subscription to the podcasts are not required for some of the series. With these podcasts, go to the podcast web site and click on the show to immediately listen to it. A few of the podcasts are available through the iTunesU in the Apple iTunes store. Those podcasts are identified below with iTunesU. These will not appear in the search window if you look in the Apple iTunes Podcast page. You need to select the iTunesU library instead.
Using iTunes makes subscribing process easier for the podcast series. If the iTunes name appears in the podcast title line, go to the iTunes web site after you have downloaded the software to your computer (available for free from http://iTunes.com). Type the name of the podcast into the search window within iTunes and a window will open with information about the podcast. Simply click on the “subscribe” button within this window and the podcast series is automatically downloaded to your iTunes library account. New ones are automatically posted in the future. If you use another subscription service other than iTunes, or if the podcast show is not listed in the iTunes directory, you may need to enter the “subscription link” address by copying this link URL into your podcasting software (like iTunes, Juice, iPodder, or other RSS radio podcast client). This link is different than the URL for the web page.
Click on this link to download the my directory of favorite history podcasts you can subscribe for free through Apple iTunes. These should also be available through the Google Play Store as well.