Listen & Learn: Science and History Podcasts

Science and History podcasts are a fun, easy-to-digest way of learning. I’ve mentioned before that I love podcasts. Lately, I’ve listened to fewer because I no longer have a commute. But I try to listen to at least one of the science and history podcasts. They are always fascinating. I always learn some new detail. Often, I find a bit of inspiration for future stories.

A black and white graphic of a pair of headphones illustrates this month's Listen & Learn: Science and History Podcasts.
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Science Friday

This podcast, hosted by Ira Flatow, covers everything science. From the outer reaches of space to the tiniest microbes in our bodies. Every year they host Cephalopod Week (beginning June 21). You’ll learn fun and cool stuff about cephalopods.  The Science Friday Initiative, a non-profit organization, dedicated to increasing the public’s access to science and scientific information, produces this podcast. Science Friday videos are available on Youtube. The podcast is available on Apple podcasts, Stitcher, Google Play, Spotify, Sound Cloud, Podbay, Tune in, and the website

You Are Not So Smart

Host David McRaney says the You Are Not So Smart podcast is “a celebration of self-delusion that explores topics related to cognitive biases, heuristics, and logical fallacies.” It’s always fascinating. McRaney interviews scientists about their research into how the mind works. At the end of every podcast, he eats a cookie. There are transcripts of the podcasts on the website. The podcast is available on Apple podcasts, Stitcher, Google Play, Spotify, SoundCloud, and the website

Flash Forward

Flash Forward is a podcast about the future. Each episode host Rose Eveleth leads us into a possible (or not so possible) future scenario. From the existence of artificial wombs, to what would happen if space pirates dragged a second moon to Earth, Rose will discuss it. After a brief, imaginative interpretation of what that future might be like, Rose interviews scientists and other experts to find out why that future is or is not possible. Available on Apple podcasts, Stitcher, Google Play, Spotify, Podbean, SoundCloud, player.fm, and the website.

Stuff You Missed in History Class

This podcast features thirty-minute stories about events in American history. From a gold rush in Georgia to a disastrous steamboat fire to the history of doughnuts the information is fascinating. Hosts Tracy V. Wilson and Holly Frey list their sources on the website. Available on Apple podcasts, Stitcher, Google Play, Spotify, Podbay, player.fm, and the website


I hope you take the time to enjoy one or more of these podcasts. I like to listen to them while doing housework or other tasks where my hands are busy but my brain needs more. Science and history podcasts are only a portion of the scads of subjects covered by podcasts. You can also read about the writing podcasts I recommend in my post, Listen & Learn: Podcasts on Writing and In the Air.

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