Podcasting Grade 4

The Grade 4 Podcasting exam is for candidates who have mastered the key skills and understanding up to Grade 3. Grade 4 is intended for candidates who have a detailed understanding of podcasting and able to demonstrate skills and understand content at a depth associated with GCSE, iGCSE and Level 2 Vocational Qualification Units.

At Grade 4 the coursework submission will centre around use of equalisation (EQ) for corrective /creative purposes. Content covered will include subject areas such as describing equipment controls, wireless connectivity, podcast editing, software fx plugins, sidechaining, using sonic branding, dynamic processing, remote interview techniques, story development, voice management, podcast frequency, and understanding of what is popular in contemporary podcast culture.

Key Features at: Grade 4

  • Analyse different story forms used by any three contrasting Podcasts in the podcast charts.
  • Use a microphone to control vocal dynamics
  • Ensure consistent vocal tone

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Assessment Methodology

The graded examinations in Podcasting are assessed via an online coursework submission. The assessment is divided into the following sections:

Part A: Coursework submission (90%)
Utilising technical and presentation skills to create a piece of practical work. This work is uploaded directly to examiners for marking through a secure portal.

Part B: Evaluation and Questioning (10%)
Evaluating what you have submitted by responding to set questions. These responses should be saved digitally and can be written, recorded audio, or recorded video and uploaded with the coursework response.

All assessment of these qualifications is external and is undertaken by RSL Examiners

Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcome
You will:
WeightingAssessment Criteria (appropriate to the grade)
1. Create a Media Production using techniques, skills and knowledge appropriate to the level.90%Demonstrate an understanding of:

a) Producing a media product using:
- Media production equipment
- Media production techniques
- Industry standard formats & protocols

b) Conceptualising and developing new content

c) Using appropriate communication techniques
2. Critically evaluate a media production.10%Reflect on the media production, identifying techniques used, areas of strength, and areas to improve.

Coursework Task

Coursework Task

Candidates are to choose a subject and create two podcasts on it.

Podcast 1
This podcast should last approximately 3 minutes. It should consist of voice and backing music, and include two dedicated audio ‘stings’. Candidates can choose how and when/where to use the backing music.

Podcast 2
This should be a follow-up to the first podcast. It should last approximately 3 to 4 minutes. This podcast must include an interview (approximately 2 minutes long) with a guest, relevant to the chosen podcast genre. The interview should be conducted remotely via software/app (Skype, WhatsApp, Zoom, FaceTime or similar) or via telephone. Candidates should use EQ to balance the remote (guest) voice to best match the host/narrator’s voice. In post-production, candidates should remove unwanted noise from the recording using appropriate techniques such as manual editing, gating, crossfades. Audio branding throughout the two podcasts should be consistent. This might be achieved through the use of backing music, sound quality, and audio stings.

File format
Candidates must bounce the resulting mixes to new stereo audio files. MP3, WAV and AIFF formats are all acceptable.

Evaluation

Candidates will answer the following questions regarding the coursework task.

Questions
What were the important skills you used to create your podcasts?
How did you make sure the listener stayed interested in your podcasts?
How did you choose the subject that you used in your podcasts?
How did you devise your interview questions?
How did you find the guest you interviewed?

Responses
Answers can be written or audio/video recordings of the candidate answering the questions. The total word count of all of the responses together should be a maximum of 400 words or 5 minutes of audio/video.

Grading Criteria

Coursework Task

Coursework Task
Bands of Attainment / Mark Range
Attainment Band DistinctionMeritPassBelow Pass 1Below Pass 2
Mark Range27–30 22–2618–22 8–17 0–7
Producing a Media ProductConsistently excellent use of media production techniques appropriate to the grade Mostly good use of media production techniques appropriate to the gradeSome good media production techniques used appropriate to the gradeRarely using appropriate media production techniques appropriate to the gradeNo attempt and/or incomplete
Conceptualising and Developing New ContentExcellent new content created for the entire work, with a response developed to the stimulusMostly good new content created for the majority of the work, with a response developed to the stimulusSome new content created for the work, with a response developed to the stimulus some of the timeSome elements of new content created for the work, with a response partially developed to the stimulus No attempt and/or incomplete
Using Appropriate Communication Techniques Ideas are communicated consistently well with techniques appropriate to the gradeIdeas are communicated most of the time with techniques mostly appropriate to the gradeIdeas are communicated some of the time with techniques sometimes appropriate to the grade Ideas are rarely communicated well with few techniques appropriate to the gradeNo attempt and/or incomplete

Evaluation

Evaluation
Bands of Attainment / Mark Range
Attainment Band DistinctionMeritPassBelow Pass 1Below Pass 2
Mark Range9-107–8 63–5 0–2
Reflection on the media production All questions are responded to with answers consistently appropriate to the grade Mainly questions are responded to with answers mostly appropriate to the gradeSome questions are responded to with answers sometimes appropriate to the gradeVery few questions are responded to with answers that are rarely appropriate to the gradeNo attempt and/or incomplete

Grade Descriptors

Podcasting
Knowledge
Grades 1-3Grades 4-5Grades 6-8
Technical & Audio QualityThe presented audio must reflect a reasonable recorded & produced standard. All audio should be free of distortion & or distracting artefacts. A basic understanding of volume control should be demonstrated.The presented audio must reflect a high level of recorded & produced standard. An awareness of contemporary production techniques should be demonstrated & there should be a high level of audio mixing between all audio elements.The presented audio is of a consistently very high quality. Excellent use of music/effects to accompany and, where appropriate, reinforce the narrative/story-line. Very good voice recording, with an accomplished and balanced mix of all appropriate sonic elements & contemporary production techniques.
ContentA basic understanding of how to start a podcast & how to commence your first broadcast.A good understanding of the principles of sonic branding in relation to podcasting. A high level of presenting and storytelling skills together with clear musical mixing of all elementsAn excellent sense of storytelling structure and plot development. Very competent presenting, narrating and interviewing techniques. Excellent musical production using appropriate sonic branding elements and musical mixing and production techniques.
CommunicationThe presenter shows a basic understanding of story, where the candidate demonstrates a structural outline with their podcasts. Some thought to voice control, with the basics of breathing, phrasing & expression well managed. Any interviews should reflect the ability to maintain an interesting conversation with the interviewee.A high level of communication skills are demonstrated by the presenter, and these are used effectively throughout the presented audio. Interaction with any interviewees is well managed and ensures a good level of demonstrable personality and audience interest.Excellent communication skills are demonstrated by the presenter, and these are used effectively and convincingly throughout the presented audio. Interaction with any interviewees is very strong, and ensures a high level of demonstrable personality and audience interest.

Additional Information

Aims and Broad Objectives

The aim of the Podcasting qualifications is to provide a flexible, progressive mastery approach to the knowledge, skills and understanding required for podcasting.

RSL’s graded qualifications motivate and encourage candidates of all ages and levels, enabling candidates to develop and enhance skills, knowledge and understanding in a safe and consistent way. The qualifications are beneficial for candidates wishing to progress at their own pace through smaller steps of achievement.

These qualifications are suitable for candidates from beginner to advanced level from age 7 – 11, 11 – 14, 14 – 16, 16 – 18 and 19+ age groups.

Progression

Graded qualifications provide a flexible progression route for candidates. They are a positive means of determining progress and enable candidates to learn the necessary techniques to gain entry to FE and HE courses. Graded qualifications operate according to our well-established pedagogy. They allow candidates to be tested in discrete stages in the development of a wide range of skills and understanding. They tend to be more rigorous than other types of exams and for that reason industry is confident that achievement at the highest level gained by candidates of graded qualifications will have the skills necessary to work in other areas of the business.

Qualification Structure

A graded qualification consists of a range of both practical and knowledge based tasks which are based on detailed requirements outlined in the relevant syllabus. Therefore, requirements for each grade will be set out in detail in the Unit Specifications, and the learning outcomes and assessment criteria for each unit will require knowledge, skills and understanding of these syllabus requirements to be demonstrated at the grade entered.

Entry Requirements

There are no entry requirements for these qualifications. However, candidates should be aware that the content at the higher grades will require a level of knowledge and understanding covered in previous qualifications.

Expectations of Knowledge, Skills and Understanding

The graded examination system is one based on our principle of ‘progressive mastery’.

At each grade, learners will complete a practical task which demonstrates their knowledge, skills and understanding of podcasting appropriate to the grade. Through engagement with the syllabus content, learners will develop their theoretical knowledge and practical skills which will support their understanding of the technical and creative process of podcasting. The knowledge, skills and understanding gradually increase in complexity and depth throughout each grade, providing the learner with a firm platform for ongoing technical and creative development.

Access and Registration

The qualifications will:

  • be available to everyone who is capable of reaching the required standards
  • be free from any barriers that restrict access and progression
  • offer equal opportunities for all wishing to access
    the qualifications

At the point of application, RSL will ensure that all candidates are fully informed about the requirements and demands of the qualification.

Podcasting Syllabus

Download the Podcasting Debut – Grade 8 syllabus...

Podcasting Syllabus

Dates & Fees

Next exam period:

You can enter for your exam at any time as assessment is via submission of coursework -

Exam Fee

£38

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