MISSOULA – University of Montana students were asked to produce science podcasts during a Principles of Living Systems lab class last semester. About 80 biology podcasts were created as group projects, and the top three now are available online at https://soundcloud.com/user-498377773.
The top picks dive into the genetics of acne, cloning, and the possibility of life naturally spreading across the universe. The 5- to 7-minute pieces cover a range of topics, and UM President Seth Bodnar even makes an appearance to share his own youthful struggle with acne.
“I was blown away by the professional-level podcasts these students put together,” said Art Woods, the biology professor who co-taught the class with Scott Miller. “Being part of a podcast myself, I know what it takes. They did great work that communicated complex ideas in interesting and understandable ways. I couldn’t be more proud.”
“Is Acne Genetic?” was produced by Rachel Bingham of Oakton, Virginia; Diego Gonzalez of Missoula; Madeleine Itschner of West Linn, Oregon; and Sydney Gallant of La
“Cloning: Down to the Science” was created by Madison Goldstein of Tucson, Arizona; Raina Woolworth of Oxford, Mississippi; and Hannah Hollenback of Superior.
The panspermia, life-in-space podcast, “Tardigrades in Space,” was made by Patrick Boise of Emigrant and Chance Cunningham of Vancouver, Washington.
Woods said three essential teaching assistants, all biology graduate students, guided the undergraduate students through the creation of the podcasts. They were Nikea Ulrich, Maddy Cochrane
“I hope people give these entertaining podcasts a listen,” Woods said. “I think they really highlight the talent level of students attracted to the University of Montana.”