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VoiceThread: Start Multimedia Conversations

VoiceThread transforms media (images, documents, and videos) into a collaborative space for video, voice, and text commenting.


Add VoiceThread to your Sakai site

Within the site, go to Site Info > Edit Tools > check VoiceThread > Continue > Finish.

The first time you enter the VoiceThread tool, it will appear to be a blank screen. Scroll down to the bottom of the screen and click Create in the right hand corner to get started.

create thread

Seeing an error message? If you have used VoiceThread before, you’ll need to upgrade your account to Duke’s VoiceThread.

Create a VoiceThread

A VoiceThread can be made up of images, documents (PDF, PowerPoint), videos and webcam recordings. We suggest limiting the length of videos to one or two minutes.

In the Create screen, click Upload to add your first media item(s). You can add files from your computer, your Flickr stream, create new webcam recordings, or browse Creative Commons images.


Add a VoiceThread to a course

When you create a VoiceThread it appears first in the MyVoice tab. You can add a VoiceThread to a course from several places. You can click Share while editing or enter the MyVoice tab. Under MyVoice you will see the course name on the left. Drag and drop the VoiceThread into a Sakai site to add it.


View a VoiceThread

Once you open a VoiceThread it will begin to play automatically. This means it will show the slides or video and any existing comments in order. Use the controls to pause, move to other slides, or go straight to a comment.


Comment on a VoiceThread

There are three kinds of commenting features: 1. add an audio file (inline, as an upload, or over the phone) 2. capture yourself on the webcam and 3. write a text comment.


The first time you use the webcam or record buttons, you may need to allow the Flash Player to access you computer’s webcam and microphone. Tell me more.

You may also draw on the slide while you are recording a comment. Once the recording has begun, simply choose the color with the mouse, click/hold, and draw.

Finally, you may navigate to the exact part of a film clip you want to comment on.


Tips for VoiceThread

  • Watch this video from VoiceThread for more tips!
  • Look in the top menu bar in VoiceThread to find help, add a profile picture and change email notifications.


  • The Playback Options in the editing screen will allow you to adjust timing, hide the final share slide, and disallow certain features.

playback options

  • The Publishing Options should be adjusted if you have decided to allow users outside of your course to access a VoiceThread by URL. Moderate Comments allows you to administer an oral exam without students hearing each others’ answers.

publishing options






This entry was posted on Friday, September 20th, 2013 at 7:55 pm and is filed under Multimedia, Tool Guides. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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