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July 28, 2008

Media Contact: Hannah Buchanan
Public Affairs Specialist
News and Information
The University of Texas at Tyler

UT Tyler Literature Students to Provide Podcasts

(From left) Dr. Ann Beebe stands with May 2008 UT Tyler graduates Jamie Bitzenhofer of Whitehouse and Michael Cerliano of Kilgore, two of 11 student volunteers participating in the nine-week recording sessions. More than 200 podcasts were created to be published on a Web site in time for the fall 2008 semester.

Students at The University of Texas at Tyler have created audio podcast discussions to serve the university’s undergraduate literature students and area high school students, Dr. Alisa White, College of Arts and Sciences dean, announced.

The podcasts are recorded, informal conversations among university student volunteers who define literary terms. Discussions are led by Dr. Ann Beebe, associate professor of literature and languages.

“After I started using the podcast technology internally for my classes, I got a good response from students so I wanted to take it to the next level and not only provide my students a supplement to my lectures, but also give back to the community by allowing these podcasts to be available for high school students,” said Beebe. “If response to the Web page version of podcasts is positive, I hope to expand the project to include discussions on literary theory, the writing process and individual works of literature.”

Beebe said the Department of Literature and Languages podcast Web page will launch in time for the 2008 fall semester. Michael Vick, campus computing services manager, and Cindy Smith, instructional design coordinator, are developing the site. 

Once the site is available, both UT Tyler and high school students can access the podcasts by downloading them onto their computers or mp3 players.

“I think it’s great that the university is reaching out to the community like this because it lets people know that UT Tyler is a serious academic institution that has a lot of valuable resources to offer for current students and students who may be coming in,” said May 2008 UT Tyler graduate Michael Cerliano of Kilgore, who was one of 11 student volunteers participating in the nine-week recording sessions.

The technology was first used by the College of Arts and Sciences two years ago, when Beebe and Dr. Robert Sterken, associate professor of political science, both volunteered to incorporate podcasts into their classes.

For more information about the project, contact Beebe, 903.565.5827 or abeebe@uttyler.edu.

One of the 15 campuses of the UT System, UT Tyler offers excellence in teaching, research, artistic performance and community service. Nearly 90 undergraduate and graduate degrees are available at UT Tyler, which has an enrollment of more than 6,000 high-ability students at its campuses in Tyler, Longview and Palestine.

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