These useful tools can help you create multimedia learning objects for your students. Have a favorite app we haven't listed here? Let us know!

Audio Recorders

Audacity (PC or Mac) — Audacity is a free application that allows you to record and edit audio. You can use it to record voice-only lectures or podcasts. Select the latest version for your operating system and follow the prompts to download and install the program. The download page also provides a link for a program called the LAME MP3 encoder. You will need this encoder to save audio files in MP3 format, which is the recommended format for recordings posted on Moodle or other sites. Note where you installed the encoder, as you will need to locate it the first time you create an MP3 file. The Audacity manual includes links to tutorials and other resources.

GarageBand (Mac) — This program, which comes installed on most Macs, allows you to create music or podcasts. See this GarageBand video tutorial for more information. Be sure to save your recordings in MP3 format.

Screen Recorders/Screencasts

A screencast is a video recording of anything displayed on your computer screen. Along with the screen action, you can record your voice as you explain what is happening on your screen. For example, you can narrate your PowerPoint slides, help students navigate a website, or walk them through the steps for formatting their research paper in Word. Many screencasting applications are available. A few are described below. 

Camtasia (PC or Mac) — In addition to recording your screen and voice, Camtasia lets you add titles, captions, call-outs, transitions, cursor highlights, and many other effects. You can delete sections, zoom in on specific portions of the screen, and perform other edits. There's also a plug-in that lets you record your slides and narrations directly from PowerPoint. Camtasia does not impose any time or size limits, however, we recommend limiting videos to a maximum of 10 minutes. Contact the HelpDesk to purchase a discounted license for Camtasia Studio for your SOU computer. Discounts are also available from sites such as Academic Check out Camtasia tutorials for more information.

Explain Everything (iPad) — This is a robust screencasting app that is well worth its $2.99 price tag. Explain Everything lets you write or draw on a whiteboard and narrate as you're writing. It records both your voice and whatever you're writing. You can import multiple images as well as PowerPoint and PDF files. There are several drawing tools, including a laser pointer and text. You can resize objects and move them around. There are a number of options for sharing, such as YouTube, DropBox or email.

Jing (PC or Mac) — Jing is the free version of Camtasia and Snagit. Video recordings are limited to five minutes.

ScreenChomp (iPad) — TechSmith has retired ScreenChomp. This teacher offers 15 alternative programs that might fill the bill if you're looking for a screen capture application.

Snagit (PC or Mac) — A versatile and easy-to-use screen capture program to capture and annotate still shots or screen recordings from your computer. You can capture your entire screen, a specific window, or a custom region. You can even capture an entire scrolling window all at once. Snagit is available bundled with Camtasia Studio or purchased alone. See Camtasia tutorials for more information.