It’s been roughly 15 years since the beginning of podcasting—a media format that, despite a slow start, has risen to peak popularity in the last few years. Things began to pick up for podcasting when Apple included a podcast player on the iPhone. Then, the format really gained traction when suddenly, and rather unexpectedly, Serial, the story of the disappearance of a popular Baltimore teen, went viral in 2014. Now in its third season Serial has been downloaded more than 340 million times.
Fast forward five years and there are now a couple million podcasts. More than half of Americans have listened to a podcast, and a third listen monthly. Maybe it’s a reflection of our busy lives—podcasts fit into the spaces in between: while working out, while commuting to work, while waiting in TSA pre-check lines (which are now longer than general boarding), and while cooking dinner.
Here’s an updated list of our favorites.
By and For Educators
1. Getting Smart Podcast: Check out more than 230 great conversations with innovative educators.
2. EDUtalk: The mission of EDUtalk podcasts is to get educators and students to talk about academia using technology. The site also encourages users to upload podcasts!
3. The 180: From Turnaround for Children, guests like Todd Rose and Linda Darling Hammond discuss using 21st century science to promote whole child learning.
4. OnEducation: Hosted by Mike Washburn and Glen Irvin, OnEducation consists of conversations on teachers, teaching, and the state of education at large.
5. Talks With Teachers: Interviews with America’s inspiring teachers, who share their stories, offer practical teaching tips.
6. The Bedley Brothers: Teacher-of-the-year brothers Scott and Tim from California interview high-profile guests on a variety of education topics using engaging anecdotes and practical info.
7. Ed Chat Radio of BAM Radio Network: Focuses on a wide array of education topics with an equally diverse pool of hosts. Make sure to explore BAM’s library of podcasts. The volume and frequency of programs will keep you listening for a long time.
8. Shift Your Paradigm: Salisbury Township Superintendent Randy Ziegenfuss (@ziegeran) and Associate Superintendent Lynn Fuini-Hetten hosts a weekly podcast on student centered learning sponsored by Education Reimagined.
9. Harvard EdCast: A series of conversations with thought leaders in the field of education that serves as a space for educational discourse and openness, focusing on the myriad issues and current events related to the field.
10. Educate from APM: Stories about education, opportunity, and how people learn.
11. All the Wonders: This podcast interviews librarians, authors, book lovers, and illustrators about the joys and wonders of reading. It is sure to keep your “to read” list growing.
12. edYou: This podcast, coming in February 2020, is hosted by teachers, for teachers and covers current classroom research, trends, and ideas.
13. Education Gadfly: Weekly policy and research review.
14. EdNext Podcast: This weekly podcast includes stories, interviews, and discussions of the latest developments in education from ESSA to teacher professional development. Be sure to also check out the Education Next Book Club podcast where Mike Petrilli interviews authors of new and classic education books.
15.The Education Exchange: This podcast from Education Next is hosted by Paul Peterson and covers education policy.
16. To A Degree: The HigherEd podcast of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
17. Stanford Social Innovation Review: Audio lectures shared by Stanford’s Graduate School of Business Social Innovation Conversations, co-hosted by Stanford Social Innovation Review’s Managing Editor Eric Nee.
18. Times Higher Education: For our international listeners, this weekly UK HigherEd-focused program describes itself as the podcast “at the heart of the higher education debate.”
20. EdSurge: Weekly podcast on edtech covering K-12 and higher ed (owned by ISTE).
21. TechTalk4Teachers: For educators wanting to keep up with the latest advances in educational technologies and their practical applications in classrooms.
22. EdTechTalk: This podcast is called Teachers Teaching Teachers and is a collaborative effort. Teachers discuss new software and tools they are successfully using in the classroom.
23. Ed Influencers: This ISTE podcast focuses on edupreneurs to get the root of the “why” of the work and also to visualize the future they aspire towards.
24. Trends and Issues in Instructional Design: Abbie Brown and Tim Green review clips of the week and peer into their crystal ball.
25. Tech Blog Writer Podcast: Over 1,000 interviews with tech leaders by Neil Hughes.
28. Tech News Briefing: A daily briefing on tech news from the Wall Street Journal.
29. Marketplace Tech: Another daily briefing on tech news.
30. User Friendly: Weekly podcast from Deloitte on tech and business trends.
Leadership & Entrepreneurship
32. Trail Blazers: Walter Isaacson hosts a Dell-sponsored podcast reviewing historical innovations.
33. Curious Minds: Leading innovation podcast with authors, innovators, and entrepreneurs.
34. Startup: A show about startups from Gimlet.
35. The Pitch: Shark tank-style podcast, also from Gimlet Media.
36. Akimbo: Seth Godin’s podcast on entrepreneurship and leadership.
37. Killer Innovations from Phil McKinney: Focuses on innovations in technology and leadership.
38. How I Built This: Startup stories from NPR.
39. 80,000 Hours: Long form inspiration for mission-oriented careers.
40. Masters of Scale with Reid Hoffman: How do companies grow from zero to a gazillion? Reid Hoffman tests his theories with famous founders.
41. The Learning Leaders Show: Each week Ryan Hawk interviews well known leaders or authors on sustaining excellence.
42. That Made all the Difference: Brought to you by Bank of America, this show talks to doers about the things that made an impact on their journeys.
43. The Between Worlds Podcast: This podcast, hosted by Mike Walsh, focuses on the future of work—what’s a threat, what’s an opportunity, and how can we navigate the space in between.
Markets & Economics
44. Marketplace: Daily podcast on markets and popular economics.
45. Make Me Smart: Ky and Molly from Marketplace host a giggly weekly recap of tech and markets.
46. Freakonomics: Weekly economic topics discussed in a way that will make you say, “Wow, I never thought of it that way.”
47. Planet Money: Life and money and markets from NPR.
48. Exchanges at Goldman Sachs: People from across the group share their insights on developments shaping markets, industries, and the global economy.
49. The Gently Mad: A triweekly show with honest, meaningful conversations and discussions about “things that matter.” Hosted by Adam Clark, It’s a show about “life, business & entrepreneurship without the BS.”
50. Smart People Podcast: Picking smart people’s “oversized brains” is what this podcast is all about. They interview people from various industries to bring their listeners episodes that satisfy those of us with insatiable curiosity.
51. McKinsey Podcast: Weekly discussion of economics and business leadership.
53. Equity: An end of week recap on venture capital news from Techcrunch.
AI & Big Data
54. Learning Machines 101: A gentle introduction to machine learning from Richard Golden.
55. Linear Digressions: Weekly discussion of big data and machine learning. (Discontinued)
56. Future of Life Institute: Weekly podcast about everything that could go wrong. Podcasts series including AI Alignment and Not Cool, a climate change series.
58. The Future of Everything: A weekly podcast from the Wall Street Journal.
59. A Glimpse Into the Future: A podcast on the global economy and fourth industrial revolution from the World Economic Forum.
60. Audiria: A podcast for those interested in learning the Spanish language. Each podcast is rated with a difficulty level or listeners can choose podcasts that concentrate on specific areas.
61. ESL: The website, “English as a Second Language,” offers a weekly practical podcast that concentrates on everyday topics for those learning to speak English. The podcast comes with a learning guide as well.
62. Poetry Off the Shelf: One of many podcasts by the Poetry Foundation, this podcast extends past the reading of a poem to discuss trends, history, and identity.
News & Views
63. BBC World Service: Browse through podcasts about psychology, science, technology, or politics. The episodes are available for 30 days and updated weekly.
65. Fareed Zakaria GPS: Best “news and views” show on TV, via podcast.
66. The Ezra Klein Show: The founder of Vox Media goes deep with numerous thought leaders in politics, science, and sociology about questions of identity, impact, and the future of media.
67. Longform: This podcast interviews longform journalists about process, reporting, and much more.
68. The Intelligence: A daily global news show from The Economist.
Why We Do What We Do
69. On Being: Krista Tippett boldly takes on the question that we all ask at one point: “What does it mean to be human, and how do we want to live?” On Being is a Peabody Award-winner and Webby Award-winner.
70. Hidden Brain: Social science research brought to life (from NPR).
71. You Are Not So Smart: More social science (a staff favorite of Getting Smart), featuring interviews on topics like tribal psychology, narrative persuasion, and active information avoidance.
72. The Moth: Storytelling at its best. The Moth is a platform to record your own story, and listen to stories told by storytellers at Moth events. It’s a community for people who love telling it how it went down, and how it is.
73. The Stanford Storytelling Project: A podcast that explores how we live in and through stories, and how to deepen our lives through our own storytelling.
74. This I Believe: With roots in Edward R. Murrow’s show with the same name, this podcast transforms essays from all walks of life into podcasts. You’ll definitely find something that inspires you with the 100,000+ library of stories.
75. This American Life: An hour of stories every week about living in America.
STEM & Maker
76. How Stuff Works: You never know what you’re going to get with this podcast. Expect topics that range from cars to food to pop-psychology.
77. TED Talks Education: Our team has yet to listen to a TED talk that didn’t inspire or ignite us with new energy for an idea or topic. Subscribe to TED’s education podcasts to hear from some of the brightest minds in academia today.
78. TED Radio Hour: Consolidates various TED Talks. Tom loves the episode on Memory and Jessica loves the Why We Collaborate episode.
79. Radiolab: Podcasts for the curious mind. Broadcast on over 300 radio stations across the United States, Radiolab explores science, philosophy, and the human experience.
81. Astronomy Cast: This website offers a weekly podcast centered on astronomy concepts like planets and cosmology.
82. Big Picture Science: Takes on big questions by interviewing leading researchers and weaving together their stories of discovery in a clever and off-kilter narrative style.
83. Distillations: Produced by the Science History Institute, this podcast explores the human stories behind science and technology, tracing a path through history in order to better understand the present.
84. Math Mutation: Short podcasts that explore mathematics. Topics cover strange and quirky concepts that aren’t normally taught in school.
85. NASA Science Casts: These video podcasts are short, fun, and bring unusual science topics to light. Podcasts are based on historical space missions completed by NASA.
86. NOVA: Offered by PBS, the popular TV program also offers podcasts on a variety of science, human interest, and engineering topics.
87. New Tech City: Approaching technology through the lens of the human experience is what this podcast is all about. A program of WNYC, this podcast will turn the mirror on the role of technology in our daily lives.
88. StarTalk Radio: A podcast series that focuses on all things extra-terrestrial. Topics include stars, the big bang, space travel, black holes, and more.
89. The Naked Scientist: Cambridge University researchers and physicians are behind this podcast filled with humor and levity as they explore a diverse set of science topics. Their goal is to strip science down to its bare essentials.
90. Climate One: Host Greg Dalton talks with environmental scientists, policy makers, and everyday people about the state of our climate and the ways to navigate climate change.
91. British History: For history buffs, this website hosts regular podcasts that focus solely on the history of England from the ice age forward.
92. China History: Another history podcast that focuses on Chinese history starting 5,000 years ago and proceeding to today.
93. The History Chicks: A fresh look at history through factual and fictional characters. Podcasts go into detail about the time period, culture, and typical lifestyle of the person highlighted in each episode.
94. Revisionist History: Malcolm Gladwell’s “journey through the overlooked and the misunderstood.” Every episode re-examines something from the past—an event, a person, an idea, even a song—and asks whether we got it right the first time..
95. Bon Appétit Foodcast: A fun cooking/food podcast that ends with the classic question: butter or olive oil?
96. Splendid Table: A slightly more process- and idea-oriented take on a food podcast.
97. A Taste of the Past: This show goes long on food origins and food cultures, and is obsessed with following humankind’s tastiest traditions.
98. Song Exploder: A rare peek behind the curtain of musicians and songwriters on process.
99. WTF: Marc Maron, one of the best interviewers around, interviews everyone from comedians on the comedy club circuit to Barack Obama and Bruce Springsteen.
100. Armchair Expert: Hosted by Dax Sheppard, this podcast interviews guests about being human.
What did we leave out? What podcasts should we check out to support our learning, teaching, and knowledge in general? Please comment to build and grow this list.
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