E Learning

Audiobooks as a virtual learning tool?

Audiobooks today are an option to reading books that can be effectively integrated as a virtual learning tool.

Audiobooks, a growing trend

It is very likely that in recent months someone has told you about that interesting story or topic that they heard… in an audiobook?

The audiobook, as its name indicates, is a book that is listened to, therefore its presentation format is audio, currently you find them on web pages or in specialized applications. They cover any type of subject, be it didactics, novels, stories, poetry, essays, etc.

There are different types of recording for audiobooks, either by a single narrator or dramatization by several narrators interacting with the dialogues of the book.

Please note that the way the work is presented may vary. Depending on the length and content presented, audiobooks can be:

– Abridged or abbreviated: presents an abridged version of the original book.
– Unabridged or complete: presents the complete version of the original books.

As a curious fact, “Don Quixote de la Mancha” is the literary work with the most audiobook versions that exists.

The Audio Publishers Audition (APA) is a non-profit organization that oversees the production, distribution and sale of audiobooks. In the latest report presented by the APA, the exponential growth of this format is highlighted, which corresponds to an increase of 22.7% in 2017 compared to the previous year. This percentage has been increasing steadily for several years.

Are audiobooks as valuable as a book?

It turns out that when talking about a good audiobook, reference is not only made to the recording of the literal reading of the text, but to the importance of transmitting the information by printing emotions in the narration.

University College London conducted a study in which it reveals that emotions are more intense when experienced with an audiobook. The convenience of its format allows you to perform other tasks at the same time, although the most practical thing about these is that you can take them everywhere and they do not wear out or take up space.

Large companies are beginning to venture into the audiobook market, such is the case of Google, which since January of this year has integrated this format into its services in nine languages, including English and Spanish.

Audiobooks in virtual learning

As teachers we are used to using different resources and tools in our courses. Why not use the audiobook? Creativity when implementing different formats enhances quality in teaching.

Keep in mind that the language in the audiobook becomes the most crucial part of the online training as it includes accent, tonality, pauses, etc.

Although at the moment the use of audiobooks is not yet common in e-Learning, there are different reasons why you can start implementing them.

An advantage of using audiobooks in virtual education is that it allows students to reinforce, by listening as many times as necessary, some concepts or topics seen in the course. This will result in a better understanding of the subject.

It is not recommended that you use a long or complex audiobook in your courses, as this can become monotonous and students will lose interest. However, you can use them as a teaching aid with basic content.

On specific topics, the audiobooks are a point of reference for discussing and knowing the opinions or comments of the students. This allows the teacher to determine understanding of the topic at hand.

Including audiobooks in virtual learning expands the possibility of supporting the different learning methods of students.

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