Magazine article Teaching Business & Economics

Play, Stop, Repeat: Students and Teachers Hooked on Youtube

Magazine article Teaching Business & Economics

Play, Stop, Repeat: Students and Teachers Hooked on Youtube

Article excerpt

In case it has escaped your notice, there is somebody else teaching your students economics. Those precious moments explaining key concepts and models at the whiteboard - students love them so much they are turning in their tens of thousands to a young teacher in Bromsgrove to go over it again. Vi rang Dal, or 'EconPlusDaT as he is known to your students has a short video carefully explaining virtually every concept in A level economics on his own Youtube channel. Teaching Business and Economics asked Vi rang to explain how he thought teachers and students could make the most of such a unique learning resource.

Many people know me by my YouTube channel name EconplusDal but more commonly I am known as Virang by my friends and colleagues, currently a teacher of Economics at Bromsgrove School but soon to become Head of Economics at Kent College Canterbury. My YouTube channel has had a huge role to play in my short teaching career to date and has surpassed its intentions in more ways than one. The use of technology in the classroom should not be understated and certainly should not be considered a fad that will die out. To embrace it, as a learning aid can be unbelievably effective and a great way to keep students engaged and learning in a way that is familiar to them.

Background behind EconplusDal

The channel has been up and running for the last 18 months with regular video uploads and scope for more content. In an era of social media and technologically aware students, the opportunity to use these channels for teaching and learning was obvious. During my PGCE year it was also clear how important it is for students to be able to learn at their own pace. Sometimes students need and desire time on their own to get to the heart of key theories and complex ideas even if that means going over the same concept multiple times - an opportunity lacking in class. From this thinking, the first few videos were born, completely random topics but topics studied in class; deregulation, Coase theorem and various solutions to market failures. They were an instant success amongst my students. Realising the power of such videos, time has always been put aside to create more and more for the benefit of students to the point where currently 154 economics videos feature on the channel covering all exam boards. Both AS and A2 micro and macroeconomics are covered with lots of IB specific material posted too, including paper 3 elements. There is also large sections of video covering development economics and the tricky parts of the international economics sub section.

An aid for students

The initial aims behind the videos were simple - a revision source for students and a way for students to catch up on work missed. There was no higher reasoning behind them but the more I received student feedback, the more I realised the far more powerful potential user benefits.

The revision benefits can not be understated - students value them tremendously for this reason. In an age where reading books has become notoriously difficult for many teenagers, visual stimuli to aid revision has gained huge popularity. With a choice to read 5 pages in a text book to understand monopoly theory or to watch a 5 minute video on the topic, there is only ever going to be one winner amongst the students. More so however is the ability to independently learn at a student's own pace - this is crucial. It is wrong to stereotype that it is only the weaker students that need constant repetition and familiarisation with content before it solidifies. …

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