What is it? Amazon's Audible.com is an extensive digital library of high-quality audiobooks, including over 150,000 titles and growing.
How does it work? New users get a 30-day free trial with one credit toward an audiobook of their choice. To give you an idea of how far this credit can stretch, Great Ideas of Philosophy, 2nd Edition (by Oxford University Professor Daniel N. Robinson) is a 60-lecture course that spans 30 hours and 10 minutes. It retails for $59-$80 when purchased as an audio download on many sites, yet its unabridged form counts as only one credit on Audible.
How hard is it to use? It’s not hard to use at all, and while audiobooks can be played directly from the site, it’s better to use the smooth interface of a mobile application for either tablet or smartphone. All books are stored in a library, meaning that users can access them from any device.
How well does it work? It works well, but for those who want to use Audible to access more than one book per month, there’s only a 30 percent discount. Also, users who spend time on lengthier listens—such as the one mentioned above—will want to keep an eye on their credits. Only six can be rolled over in total, meaning that if you go seven months without any new downloads, you lose a credit. At $14.95 a month, that’s a sizable loss.
How do I use it in the classroom? Audible’s phenomenal listening experiences feature gripping voice acting from authors, actors and intellectuals alike. Bring fiction to life and supplement discussions of complex subject matter with one of the site’s many titles, which span all grade levels and subjects.
Read about other products featured in the Tech in the Classroom series.
Tech in the Classroom is a recurring feature that examines widely available technology, software and gadgets and how they might be used in a school setting.