Sound and vision blog

18 September 2008

Escaping Google: a case study from Joseph Priestley College

Last winter, the Archival Sound Recordings team were involved in a programme run by the Quality Improvement Agency to create a series of digital learning packages using online multi-media resources.  The programme brought together FE college teachers from across Yorkshire to explore how resources such as Archival Sound Recordings, 19th Century Newspapers and NewsFilm Online can be exploited in a learning environment.

Amanda Broadley, a photography tutor from Joseph Priestley College, used the Art and Design Interviews to create a PowerPoint presentation which incorporated images by famous British and European photographers with excerpts from the artists’ oral histories.

She found that Archival Sound Recordings helped students to expand the range of artists they explored from those easily encountered using search engines.  “When students do their research on the internet, more often than not it’s American photographers that they find.  The Archival Sound Recordings site was good in that it showcased British photographers.”

Audio is not always the first point-of-call for research by artists and art historians.  Images, written biographies and reviews are more obvious sources, but recorded interviews can provide a different kind of insight and inspiration.  Amanda commented: “As a tutor I maybe too often stand there and give my opinion about somebody’s work.  Listening to interviews allows students to hear from the photographer themselves what’s behind the images.  The realism of it inspired students and encouraged them to source other material beyond Google searches”

To submit your own case study, please email


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