Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Discovering iTunes U and Duke's iTunes U

The birth of the NT Pod has necessitated my finally coming to terms with the world of iTunes, something I have flirted with in the past but had never really embraced, preferring to access podcasts through Google Reader and so on. Well, it seems that one of the amazing developments on iTunes, about which I was only dimly aware, is a special section for higher education authors and users called iTunes U. It's a remarkable phenomenon, a kind of new Open University, where anyone can go and download lectures, podcasts, conference talks and so on. The idea in part is to provide multi-media materials for students on courses, and so some parts of iTunes U will be institution and course specific. But massive swathes of material are available free to all members of the public. It's a revolution in what British universities used to call "extra-mural learning", education beyond the walls of the university.

Many universities and colleges have their own iTunes U sites, including my own, Duke University, which has an impressive iTunes U site with lots of materials of interest. A lot of it consists of audio materials from conferences or public lectures, but some is created specially for the web. Here's the link to Duke's iTunes U site:

Duke on iTunes U

The links on that page will encourage an iTunes application to launch, so you will need to have iTunes installed if you don't have it already.

So what's available in our area over at Duke's iTunes U site? If you look to the left on the main menu, you will see Religion listed as one of the topics. Included under this topic is one thing that I have mentioned previously, the link to Dale Allison's 2008 Kenneth Clark Lectures. See also Carol Meyers on Women in Scripture; Beyond the Da Vinci Code with Bart Ehrman and Richard Hays; and Two Views of the Resurrection with Gary Habermas and Joel Marcus. And now also the NT Pod, with me!

Many thanks to Stephen Toback and Tom Freeland for their help in introducing me to the world of iTunes U and adding the NT Pod to its service.


EK said...

Thanks for your podcast! I'm looking forward to it. Any chance you might consider recording one of your upcoming courses and "podcasting" the lectures as you go? A number of universities do this on a variety of topics.

Mark Goodacre said...

Thanks. Good thought re. the course; I don't think I will record and upload actual lectures, but I may try doing individual podcasts related to a particular course. I experimented with this last semester, and enjoyed doing it, so will probably try that again, either as part of the NT Pod, or separately.

Anonymous said...

I would find it really helpful if you could either post or direct me to a step by step account of how to make and upload a podcast so that it becomes available for students. I am due to teach a fully online course next semester, and want to try and make initial use of podcasting if I can. Is there a very simple step by step guide etc.?

Hope all is well

John Anderson said...


As an alum of the divinity school, I thank you for posting this information. The year I enrolled for my masters at Duke was the first year they distributed free ipods to all incoming freshmen. I, of course, did not get one, and thus I didn't dabble much in this media. But, I will gladly check it out now, thanks!

Mark Goodacre said...

Sean: good idea. I'll blog something on it.

John: pleased it helped. Ah, they were happy days, apparently, with iPods everywhere! You can still designate a course an iPod course though I'm not sure if students get free iPods for them.

John Anderson said...


May I ask an off-topic question. Since I am in OT, and finishing up my Ph.D. (planned) by the end of the upcoming academic year. Do you know (and feel free to email me if you prefer: j_anderson at baylor dot edu) if there are plans for any OT positions at Duke--perhaps filling in the slot left open by Jim Crenshaw--or even elsewhere, that are on your radar? Thanks!