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SA 681 | Long Form Podcast Storytelling (Hybrid), NOT FOR CREDIT May Term

SA 681 | Long Form Podcast Storytelling (Hybrid), NOT FOR CREDIT May Term


Maximum Enrollment: 12 LBS

Course Description

SA 681: Long Form Podcast Storytelling (Hybrid), 8 Credit Hours

Course Description: 

What does it take to create a serialized story? How do you tell one story over multiple episodes?  This 12-week class with award-winning journalist Robert Smith, will give students all they need to create serialized podcasts of their own, from identifying a topic and story, to planning field work, structuring series story arcs, editing and post-production and more. 

This will be a hands-on, fieldwork and production intensive course. Students will work as a team to conduct in-depth reporting on a collaboratively-selected story/topic, and will then work together to create a serialized episodic miniseries. Students will take on many roles: researcher, reporter, producer, host, sound designer and editor.  

The class will be a combination of online and in-person instruction. Much of the research and pre-production will happen remotely over the first four weeks. Students will then spend four weeks in person in Maine doing fieldwork—recording interviews, gathering tape, etc. After this the class will again go online for editing and post-production over the final four weeks. 

The final podcast will be shared in all Salt’s networks and beyond. Students who complete this class will leave with a toolkit for creating their own serialized narratives, as well as a polished and published portfolio piece. 

This is not a beginner class—students will need to know how to operate an audio recorder as well as edit audio on a digital audio workstation. Students should also have at least some experience with interviewing and writing for audio.


Intermediate / Graduate 


  • This class is not for beginners; audio-recording experience and equipment/ editing software experience required 


Non-Matriculated Applications are required (and unofficial transcripts are acceptable for non-matriculated students).This class is filling up fast register before April 30th, 2021!


  • Pre-Production ONLINE: May 3rd & 4th* (Monday/Tuesday) 5-8PM May10 - May 26 (Mondays and Wednesdays by Zoom) 5-8PM (EST) 
  • Production / Field Work ON CAMPUS: May 29 - June 22* (Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays from 9AM-3PM (EST) with a break for lunch on your own. Last in-person day is Tuesday, June 22nd) 
  • Post-Production ONLINE: June 26 - July 23 (Mondays and Wednesdays by Zoom, 6-9PM (EST)



$3,900 for graduates of the Salt Institute certificate program.  Email us for more information!

*Transcript Fee:

$50 (for those seeking Graduate college-level credits / waived for non-credit-seekers) 


Housing may be available for the on-campus Field Work portion of this course. If you are interested in housing, let us know. Note: Maine can be difficult for housing in the summer. We recommend that you book your housing when you register for this class. This course has an enrollment cut-off date of April 23. If this course doesn’t run, you will be informed by that day, which should be early enough for most reservation policies to avoid cancellation fees. MECA is not responsible for lodging fees booked off campus.

***Covid-19 and Safety Protocols: 

MECA has been open to enrolled students using social distancing protocols and facility-management procedures to ensure the safety of all our students. Students enrolled in any on-campus event must agree to abide by our Covid-19 Safety protocols, sign an agreement with Student Life to do so regardless of housing on or off campus, and submit to weekly testing on campus. The cost of weekly testing for the on-campus component is part of the tuition price for this course. 



Robert Smith 

Instructor Bio:

Robert Smith is host and correspondent for NPR's Planet Money where he tells stories about the global economy. As part of his explanatory journalism, Robert has drilled for oil, harvested cotton, launched a satellite into space, and created a new superhero comic. Robert came to podcasting after decades in radio covering education, the environment, politics and the unique magic of New York City.  He has taught audio at Princeton and Columbia Journalism School and is a frequent trainer at NPR member stations and podcasting production companies. He has won the highest awards in broadcasting, including the Peabody and the DuPont. 


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