Practical Application:How To Voicethread

VoiceThread is a web-based platform for interactive collaboration that allows you to upload images, video, or documents, and then to record audio, video, or text comments around each screen, and then invite others to record comments as well via text, voice, or video. It was quickly adopted by educators as a useful tool to engage students. It is used by teachers to/for:

  • Teach new content
  • Assess student understanding
  • Conduct listening assessment
  • Conduct speaking assessment
  • Comment, such as on art
  • Peer critiques of art
  • Student storytelling
  • Student presentations
  • Collaborative presentations
  • Literature/reading discussions
  • Oral histories

UNC's ITS website explains it thusly: Use Voicethread to:

Demonstrate .........Practice .............Critique

Explain ..................Analyze .............Show off

Interpret ................Report ...............Have fun

Voicethread has a free account which gets you basic functionality, and a school account - very reasonably priced - that allows both teachers and students to use it extensively. Start by creating a free account. Navigate to and click on Register.

Put in your information and you are all set.

Screen Shot 2015-02-20 at 1.06.31 PM.png

To create a new Voicethread, you must start with your images (or documents, or even video). A Powerpoint presentation is a great place to start, though you can also just upload images.

There are three menu options in the upper left: Browse - where you can see all of the public threads; Create - where you create your own; and MyVoice - the Voicethreads you have created and that have been shared with you; you can also see the tutorials here.

Screen Shot 2015-02-20 at 1.43.14 PM.png

Upload a Powerpoint or image from your computer now. It can be one screen or 100. Once it has uploaded, you will want to give your presentation a name, and name the slides as well. Note that you also enter a link in the name of the slide.

Once you have your slides up, click on Comment to record your comments.

Screen Shot 2015-02-20 at 1.49.22 PM.png

There are a number of ways to add a comment: record audio, record video, type, or upload an audio comment you have already recorded.

Screen Shot 2015-02-20 at 1.50.01 PM.png Screen Shot 2015-02-20 at 1.50.08 PM.png Screen Shot 2015-02-20 at 1.50.14 PM.png Screen Shot 2015-02-20 at 1.50.21 PM.png

If you choose to make an audio comment, you will have to give Voicethread access to your microphone and camera. Click on Allow.

Screen Shot 2015-02-20 at 1.50.34 PM.png

Note that some browsers may also ask you to give permission. Above the screen you may see the following, in which case click on Allow.

Screen Shot 2015-02-20 at 1.50.44 PM.png Screen Shot 2015-02-20 at 1.51.01 PM.png

Now start recording. Speak as much as you like. Note that while you are recording, you can use the cursor to draw on the screen in various colors by clicking on the color wheel to the right.

Screen Shot 2015-02-20 at 1.51.22 PM.png

One you are done, click on stop recording.

Screen Shot 2015-02-20 at 1.51.13 PM.png

Voicethread will take a minute to process, then will play it back. Here can you choose to save it, continue recording, or cancel it and record again.

Screen Shot 2015-02-20 at 1.51.35 PM.png

What your users see looks like this.

Screen Shot 2015-02-20 at 2.01.27 PM.png

The final page is the Share page, where you can get embed code, or a link, or send via email. If you eventually use a school account, you will create a group for each class.

Screen Shot 2015-02-20 at 2.01.55 PM.png

Note that you have a number of publishing options- found via links in the lower left of your screen - and can determine whether other people can comment or not (which will depend on how you are using the Voicethread).

Screen Shot 2015-02-20 at 2.08.58 PM.png

Screen Shot 2015-02-20 at 2.02.17 PM.png Screen Shot 2015-02-20 at 2.02.30 PM.png

When you go back to the MyVoice tab, you will see your Voicethread.

Screen Shot 2015-02-20 at 2.09.26 PM.png

You have now made your first Voicethread. There is a wealth of information online about how to use Voicethread. Voicethread has a number of tutorials you should watch.

A nice tutorial here