Teaching with YouTube Playlists

As I’ve mentioned previously I have been working on a project looking at the use of YouTube in my teaching. One of the main outputs of this project (which is winding to a close) was going to be a community playlist of youtube videos that would be useful to anybody teaching sociology.

To this end I’ve been building up a playlist and publicising the link to all and sundry, with help from C-SAP. To date I’ve had a limited number of responses (all of which were appreciated!) but were all individually emailed links to interesting stuff. I’ve tried to embed my playlist below but it doesn’t seem to want to work, which is a shame as I’ve embedded it into my VLE and it looks pretty snazzy.


I can embed individual videos though, so here are a couple that are on the playlist that might be of interest…

This one is a bit of a slow starter, but is v. funny (in a south park kind of way) and sociologically sound (IMHO)

This is from the excellent BBC show ‘mongrels’ and I use it to discuss Bourdieu’s cultural capital.

And talking of Bourdieu the most popular video with the teachers I’ve spoken to was a film about the man himself, in 7 parts across YouTube.

So the community adoption of my playlist hasn’t really happened, it hasn’t gone viral as I’d maybe hoped, although there is still time! I could probably have done more to promote it, maybe this blog post will help?

Anyway the reason that I’m writing this is actually to mention that one of the outcomes of the focus groups we ran with students was that the playlist was very popular with them. In fact one described it as ‘a modern reading list’. More than that, some of the students were already looking to YouTube for their studies and over the course of the module were suggesting videos to me that might be of interest. One mentioned that they were delighted when one of their suggestions made it into a session! Perhaps student based playlists (inside or out of YouTube) are the future?

I’ve put together a proposal for something where hopefully I’ll get to explore the idea of supporting students to gather their own online open resources and use them in class. More on that if successful!

About digitalscholar

I am a sociologist with an interest in new technology. Previously I’ve worked on a number of projects at Lancaster University and the Open University looking at the use of new technologies and social media by researchers. I was also a social sciences teaching fellow at the foundation centre at Durham University teaching sociology and anthropology. I am now a senior lecturer at the University of West London's Institute for Teaching, Innovation and Learning where I oversee the foundation provision and support retention. I'm sure I'll still be interested in, and occasionally blog about, tech related things. I use this blog to post thoughts about using new technologies in my professional academic life and wider thoughts and links relating to technology more generally.
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