Podcast #2: Investigative Narrative R211: Rhetoric & Sports

Stories are powerful. They can move people to action, be triggers of change, transform understanding, and alter how we see ourselves and others in the world. But our ability to tell stories is fundamentally tied to our ability to leverage details, to provide information in engaging ways, and to situate people in a representation of an experience. And so, it is to stories, and the telling of stories, that we now turn.


In this assignment, students will create a podcast that tells a story (i.e., a narrative) about a topic, figure, or issue related to the intersections of rhetoric and sports (as we have framed it in our class discussions). But to be able to tell a story, students must first investigate (i.e., research), gather artifacts, collect media elements, and the like that will help enhance their narratives, add depth and development to their story, and provide nuance and a richness to the final podcast production. These podcast creations vary widely in the topic and focus, style and approach, but they are, at their core, intended to be stories (and the telling of a story).

A Narrative Podcast Example

As per our discussions in class, below is a clip of S-Town which student's might see as a 'mentor text' for this kind of engagement.


The purpose of this assignment is to bring together research practices, rhetorical analysis, and digital field methods, and leverage them to tell a story. But the "telling" is not simply a single-person narrative, but rather a weaving of a tapestry of elements, artifacts, reflection, and the like to situate listeners in a moment, in a perspective, in an experience.


  • Must be 11:00-15:00 minutes in length;
  • include citations and/or references (in the podcast itself and in full MLA/APA citation style in printed copy)
  • clearly tell a story (and involve several oral/audio elements beyond just the podcaster's voice);
  • be related to, in some notable degree, rhetoric and sports (either in focus or in engagement);
  • include a self evaluation;
  • include two peer evaluations.

Due Dates

  • Rough Draft - 3/19
  • Final Draft & Self Reflection - 3/21
  • Peer Evaluations - 3/28


These podcasts will be graded on their overall quality, their technical efficacy, their development of ideas, their depth of engagement, the insightfulness of the explication, and matters of the aesthetic (e.g., tone, voice, and style, among others).

Grade (in 3 parts)

  • Students will also provide a self-evaluation of their podcast, which will account for 20% of the final podcast grade.
  • Students will provide peer evaluations of each other’s work (3 per podcast), with the 3 peer evaluations collectively accounting for 30% of the final podcast grade.
  • Instructor will provide an assessment of the student podcast, which will account for 50% of the final podcast grade.


Created with images by TheAngryTeddy - "microphone audio computer" • Enoc Valenzuela - "Microphone on arm stand" • Oscar Ivan Esquivel Arteaga - "untitled image"