With the right content preparation, camera and audio setup, and a little bit of editing, you can create your own educational videos. These tools are pretty easy to use and are generally free or low cost. Here are a few technology recommendations, some of which are available for you to try in the 204 Butler DIY Video Station.

Content creation software

Every educational video that incorporates text and graphics must begin with good content preparation. This is often achieved by using slide presentation tools, such as Google Presentations or PowerPoint, to create, annotate, and animate visuals.

Content creation software recommendations

  • Slide Creation: Google Presentations (Windows & Mac), PowerPoint (Windows & Mac) and Keynote (Mac)
  • Annotations and drawing tool: Autodesk Sketchbook (Windows & Mac)

Screen capture and editing software

Screen capture programs run in the background of your computer and allow you to record screen actions as well as audio from a microphone or the desktop audio. One option frequently used by instructors is Camtasia Studio. This program allows the creator to record voiceover narration and offers a full range of annotation and pointer tools to highlight areas of the screen. Other features include the ability to embed hyperlinks, integrate interactive quizzes, and a robust set of editing tools.

Screen capture software recommendations

Audio and video editing software

You will likely edit your video content in your screen capture software, such as Camtasia or Screenflow, but here are some other options if you’d like to explore more professional tools, or you need special tools for media such as music.

Editing software recommendations


Depending on the type of video you plan to create, your hardware requirements will vary. For example, if you are creating a Khan-academy style video, you will need a drawing tablet. However, regardless of your video design, you will need a personal computer capable of running the software you use for content creation and editing. It is also recommended that you purchase an external microphone in order to reduce background noise from your recordings.

Hardware recommendations

The CTL researches and experiments.

The Columbia Center for Teaching and Learning provides an array of resources and tools for instructional activities.