Using Podcasts to Learn Neuroscience 20 Minutes at a Time

Cristina Besosa is so fascinated with everything she has learned in her neuroscience classes that she wants to share it with others. Besosa, with the support of the neuroscience department, has launched a podcast entitled In Your Brain. The podcast takes various topics of neuroscience and presents them in digestible episodes that people can listen whenever is convenient.

Besosa started becoming interested in podcasts while working in a research lab at Emory University.

“The lab can be lonely,” said Besosa. “Other people are in the lab, but everyone is doing their own thing, and so you can be kind of isolated for the whole day. I got really into podcasts. That kept me entertained and kept me in company.”

Her podcasts of choice…science podcasts. In addition to keeping her entertained, Besosa realized that she was learning so much. Originally, interested in a medical career, she quickly discovered all the other science-related fields there were. She became fascinated with the brain. That led her to the University of Florida where she is currently working on her Ph.D. in neuroscience.

Cristina Besosa
Cristina Besosa hosts In Your Mind, a podcast featuring the research down in the department of neuroscience.

On completion of her first year of courses, Besosa wanted to share all her newfound knowledge.

“I was so fascinated that I found myself everyday in class saying ‘oh, this is so cool,’ or ‘this is so useful to know,” said Besosa. “I thought it was a really good opportunity to take everything I was learning and share it with people.”

Having learned how to create podcasts in the library at Emory University, a service that is also offered at UF’s George A. Smathers Library, Besosa decided to create short podcasts about all the different neuroscience topics studied at the University of Florida.

“If you hear my podcast throughout all the various episodes, you feel that you have gone through the first intro course of neuroscience,” explained Besosa.

Besosa is thankful to all the support she has received from the department. In addition to use of microphones and connecting her to an editing company, the faculty have made themselves available to be interviewed and share their expertise on the podcast. The inaugural episode features Dr. Malú Tansey’s work on the gut-brain axis. Dr. Barry Setlow shares his work on addiction and the brain. Future episodes will feature Dr. Nancy Padilla-Coreano’s work on social behavior, Dr. Gordon Mitchell’s work on breathing and the brain, and Dr. Eduardo Candelario-Jalil’s research into strokes.

Besosa’s goal is to create a podcast with the same vibe as one of her favorites from the days of listening in the lab, Science Vs.

“It’s my goal of what a great science podcast is,” explained Besosa. “It’s fun, entertaining, gives interesting stories, and also very good at giving the facts and using the literature to really educate the public.”

Besosa’s podcast, In Your Brain, can be found on Spotify or Apple Podcasts.