Soundtrap –A Cloud-Based Application and Podcasting Tool to Create 21st Century Student Creativity and Collaboration Skills

Soundtrap

As we have learned over the last year, providing students alternative ways to creatively collaborate in a remote environment is essential.  The cloud-based application Soundtrap is a digital audio workstation (DAW) that provides students and instructors with an alternative remote collaboration option. Soundtrap also supports the development of student critical thinking and creativity skills.  These skills are important for 21st-century learners to practice as they prepare for the future workforce. 

Soundtrap started in the Spotify community as a cloud-based recording studio to create and collaborate on music. However, Soundtrap also provides a platform for students to collaborate on course audio projects, such as podcasts or virtual presentations.

There are numerous ways to incorporate Soundtrap into any course.

  • Interviews:  Students can interview professionals about their careers, classmates about various topics, such as internship experiences, or explore with alumni – life after graduation.
  • Job Seeking Support: Students can record a mock interview and receive instructor feedback.
  • Presentations:  Students can record, practice, and critique presentations, add audio to a presentation or use the platform to debate differing viewpoints.
  • Project-Based Learning (PBL):  Users can add audio to PBL activities and provide classmates the opportunity to give peer-review feedback.
  • Portfolios: Students can capture their work and share it with future employers
  • Assessment: An excellent tool for incorporating alternative assessments, especially for students who prefer to be heard but not seen.
  • Study Tool: A study tool students can use to read, record, and reflect on what they have learned.
  • Knowledge Sharing:  Students can create an instructional resource that can be shared with classmates to enhance understanding or discussions.
  • Soundtrap also works well with Waklet (January 2021).  Students can create a Walklet account to organize their Soundtrap project(s).

Instructors may also find Soundtrap useful. Teachers who flip their classrooms can record tutorials that students can listen to asynchronously.  The recordings not only provide students flexibility but also allows them to rewind and repeat as needed.  Instructors can also use Soundtrap to facilitate learning conversations in an asynchronous environment by recording and broadcasting group discussions.

Soundtrap can be integrated with most major LMS systems or shared through Microsoft Teams or Google Classroom applications. Instructors can also share Soundtrap with a URL link.

Soundtrap is easy to use and start using.  All that is required is access to a computer and headset.  Students can enroll themselves in Soundtrap with either an instructor-provided class code or URL link. If students elect to set up a Soundtrap group, they can; then invite the teacher to their group.

Instructors can also import students into Soundtrap from a CSV file. A temporary password can then be emailed to students to modify after their first log-in attempt. Soundtrap also lets instructors invite other teachers or industry professionals to groups.  This is an excellent way for these individuals to be involved in interview or mentoring activities. For instructors who want to control who can collaborate, Soundtrap permissions provide this option.

To get started in Soundtrap, simply enter the studio, and start recording. You do not have to worry about being perfect. Soundtrap has a simple editing feature, which converts the audio to text. This lets you edit your recording like you were editing a Word document.

Best of all, Soundtrap has a free version that works well for short-term projects, especially if students set up their groups and invite the instructor to join the group. Low-cost paid versions are also available under Soundtrap for Education.

Regarding accessibility and compliance, Soundtrap is accessible on any browser and from various devices.  Soundtrap is also guaranteed COPPA, GDPR, and FERPA compliant, which provides students with a safe and secure environment for creative collaboration.

Finally, Soundtrap can be downloaded as an MP3.  The MP3 files allow users to store on their computer, import into an LMS or share on YouTube.

To learn more about Soundtrap for Education or to set up an account, go to https://www.soundtrap.com/edu/#.

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