A category that at least in some way encompassed nearly every aspect of this program, Digital & Media Literacy can be defined as the ability to create and evaluate content on at least one digital or media platform related to a specific communication initiative and audience. Moving between powerpoint presentations made for YouTube viewing to audio-only podcasts, I honed this skill both in making sure I understood my subject matter and could convey it smoothly. Throughout the duration of these projects, I discovered that the best way for me to generate good results is to draw up a script containing the material I would like to discuss. This was even true when using PowerPoint slides, as the amount of text they contained would often make it difficult for me to remain focused on good vocal performance for want of remembering the full intended context of a given note.
While I indeed had several experiences of varying quality and length, probably my most solid podcast was MetaTalk Podcast Three: Identity Work in the 21st Century. Here, I took relevant interview snippets from three participants, added music and other sound bites, and edited them into a mostly coherent program around a theme. The project called on students to use their voices creatively, that is to bring life to the story through inflection and good rhythm. This was challenging, but I feel I came closest to this goal on that podcast. Others followed, such as a podcast on connectivity with cell phones, but this particular program did not reach quite the same level. But variance is fine, as it is part of the learning process.
As far as my learning goes, I believe I most improved my ability to engage in public speaking. The various project designs allowed me to explore what worked and what was less effective, and given that my most desired career is to work in public radio in some capacity the ability to come up with show ideas, arrange interviews, and the like is probably one of the most valuable elements of practice I have acquired as a student.
Moving forward, I am contemplating creating a podcast that I will use to elevate me toward my career goals. I will use some of the basic editing skills as well as those related to effective inquiry and research that I have also worked on throughout to help me come up with real, useful content that attracts my desired audience. The tentative title of this podcast will be GO: With The Blind Traveler. It will involve collecting a series of interviews from businesses along various public transit lines, thereby bringing together my knowledge of travel, business and nonprofits, and good communication practices.