You will be listening to a number of lectures and presentations in "Streaming Audio" format. This is like listening to an audio tape, except that you play the file over the Internet. The digitized audio file is kept on a server, and can be accessed and listened to by a number of listeners, in different places, at the same time.
To listen to Streaming Audio, you will need the following:
a computer with an Internet connection.
You can download it at home for free here
The version for MAC OS X is here.
You may find that you will get better quality sound at home as well by disconnecting your computer speakers and plugging your earphones into the speaker jack. Usually the sound will be clearer, and you won't need much volume.
Volume can be adjusted several ways on a PC: at the speaker (not available if you are using earphones); on the RealPlayer itself, with the slide bar in the center of the Player; and on the MultiMedia icon in the Control Panel (Start-Settings-Control Panel-Multimedia-Audio. Make sure the little box "Show volume control on the taskbar" is checked).
To play a streaming audio file, use your Web browser to connect to the Web page, and click on the link. The browser will automatically bring up the VLC Media Player, which will take a few seconds to connect to the file, "buffer" a few seconds of sound, and then begin the presentation.