Recording Screencasts Using PowerPoint

This step-by-step guide will look at how to produce a screencast using Microsoft PowerPoint and Camtasia Studio. If you would like to know how you can use screencasts for learning and teaching and get some best practice tips, please refer to the Screencast for Learning and Teaching guide.

In order to follow-up with this guide, ensure you have Camtasia Studio installed and your PowerPoint presentation is ready. You will need a microphone to record your voice-over and if required plug-in or turn on the web camera to record video feed.
PowerPoint Recording
  1. Open your presentation in Microsoft PowerPoint. Check for errors (i.e. spelling, grammar, missing slide/image). Rehearse the slides, ensure you have enough space on your slides for annotations, formulas or additional notes.
  2. With Camtasia Studio installed, Microsoft PowerPoint will display the Recording Toolbar on the Add-Ins tab within the PowerPoint Ribbon Menu Bar. Click Add-Ins tab to reveal the options:addin_new

  3. Before you start recording, you will need to check if the audio and web camera inputs are set correctly. In order to do this, click the Recording options icon.
  4. In the Add-in Option pop-up, tick Record audio and select the appropriate Audio source from the drop down list. Once the audio source is selected, speak into the microphone with your normal presenting voice and watch the bar move indicating the recording volume. The volume should peak around the middle of the bar. If it is too high, turn down the microphone volume with the slider, or move the microphone further away. If it is too low, turn the microphone volume up or move the microphone closer. (If you are NOT recording the web camera feed, skip step 5 and follow-up from step 6).
    recordAudio3      recordAudio2
  5. If you are recording the web camera feed, tick Record from camera then click Camera setup. This setup will automatically select your video input but if your device is not listed/selected, ensure the device is plugged in correctly. Next, adjust the web camera’s view. Use the camera preview pod to correct your position or the camera angle appropriately. Once you are happy with the camera’s position, click OK.
    recordCam1    recordCam2
  6. Then, click OK on Recording options.
  7. Click Record when you are ready to record your presentation.
  8. PowerPoint will launch your slides into presentation mode and prompt a pop-up. Test the volume level by speaking into the microphone and use the slider to increase or decrease the volume level. With the volume at the right level, click the Click to begin recording button to start recording.
  9. Once the recording begins, everything you say and do on screen will be recorded. You can now talk over the PowerPoint exactly as you would in a live lecture.
  10. When you are done with the presentation or when you reach the last slide, a pop-up will prompt either to stop or continue the recording. Click Stop recording.
  11. PowerPoint will automatically present a window to save your recording as a Techsmith Recording Format file (.trec). Name your file and save it.

NOTE: If you are using a shared facility/computer, you are advised to create a folder with your name and U number to avoid any confusion or overwriting files created by other users.)

Camtasia Studio

This next section will demonstrate how you can publish your final video file in Camtasia Studio. Please note that this guide does not cover the details on how to edit your recording. If you require any assistance in editing your video, please contact the eLearning team from the Department for Learning and Development.

  1. Once you have saved the .trec file, select Produce your recording option. Click OK to continue.
  2. This will automatically launch Camtasia Studio followed by the Production Wizard. You will see a drop down menu with a selection of final output formats. Select HD MP4 only (up to 720p). This will output a High Definition MPEG 4 video that can be used on most platforms. Click Nextpublish_2b
  3. A pop-up window will be presented, click OK. Next, give a Production Name, then click the folder icon to browse and select the destination that you would like to save your file to. Then, click Finish.
    publish_3  namethefile
  4. Rendering is the final phase where sequenced images are converted into a video. This is a hardware-demanding process so be cautious of the length of your video. The longer the video, the longer the rendering process. You will see a small window with a progress bar.
  5. Once the rendering is complete, the default video player on your computer will launch your final video.