Jacqui Cheng in ars technica today highlights a new study that shows how students perform better on tests when they use podcasts to take notes. In fact, podcasts seem to teach students better than real teachers do.


State University of New York (SUNY) Fredonia psychologist Dani McKinney released the study, "iTunes University and the classroom: Can podcasts replace Professors?" which suggests that "students who download the podcast version of a class tend to achieve better academic performance than those who don't."

Podcasts, it turns out, enable students to go back and repeat parts of the lecture they had trouble understanding. "It isn't so much that you have a podcast, it's what you do with it," McKinney told New Scientist.

"As for whether podcasts can replace professors, McKinney stops short of suggesting that all classrooms become virtual," says ars technica. "She refers to them as a supplemental tool to a traditional lecture that can help students gain a better understanding of the material and also help free up professors from answering repetitive questions.

"The takeaway? Go to class, take notes, listen to the podcast, and take more notes." Welcome to the new classroom.