Audio Pedagogy Tools and Tips

If you’re new to audio pedagogy, here are some resources to get you started:



Free, open-source audio recording and editing software available for download (Mac and Windows). There are many tutorials online. Here’s a good place to start: “Super-Fast Guide to Audio Editing”

Lame MP3 Encoder
Instructions and link for downloading a plug-in that enables Audacity to export to the MP3 audio file format (compressed format that works best for posting and sharing online).


A non-profit “Internet Library” of free material for download; includes audio files.
The Freesound Project is a collaborative database of Creative Commons licensed sounds. It focuses on sound, not songs, and anyone can contribute.
The Free Music Archive, directed by WFMU radio, is a curated library of high-quality, legal audio to download, share and reuse, depending on its licensing.
A community of free, legal and unlimited music published under a variety of Creative Commons licenses. Unlike FMA, Jamendo is not “curated”.


Provides free accounts for storing and sharing audio files online. Think of it as the YouTube of the audio world. Allows for simple embeds of sound players and audio tracks into blogs and websites.



Geoffrey Nunberg’s Principles
As a simple in-class exercise, ask students (in groups) to use these principles to adapt a traditional print-based article into a piece of writing suitable for audio.


Public Radio Exchange is an online marketplace for distribution, review, and licensing of public radio programming – includes a range of material in the audio documentary genre.
Radio Diaries is a program that helps ordinary people produce oral histories and short memoirs for public radio. Their mission is give voice to those typically underrepresented by the media. Check out their Handbook: How to Make Your Own Radio Diary.
A weekly radio show “about curiosity. Where sound illuminates ideas, and the boundaries blur between science, philosophy, and human experience.”
Sound Portraits is “dedicated to telling stories that bring neglected American voices to a national audience.” Its work is heard on NPR’s All Things Considered and Weekend Edition.
The Third Coast International Audio Festival is a premier site for feature and documentary audio essays heard on radio and online. Created and run by Chicago Public Radio.

This American Life
Award-winning weekly public radio show producing a broad range of audio essay and documentary.
A “showcase and workshop” for producing audio essays and documentaries—great information, advice, interviews, and programs. Also accepts submissions.