VoiceThread Video and Voice Discussion Board

If you are unable to access VoiceThread, the most common issue is that your browser is blocking Flash. You can either enable Flash in your browser or you can switch to the HTML5 version of HTML (recommended).

VoiceThread has just released a new Blackboard building block that better aligns with Northeastern’s authentication standards and that will allow for improved course copy workflows in the future. Faculty will not be required to use the new integration (which is marked “beta” in the course tools menu), but if they do, users may be prompted to complete an account verification process the first time they click on a building block link. If after clicking on this link, you see a request to verify your account, please follow these instructions. Email ats@neu.edu with any issues you encounter.

Overview of VoiceThread

VoiceThread is a third-party tool that can be integrated into Blackboard that allows you and your students to create multimedia presentations and discuss via text, voice, or video. Discussion is asynchronous, so students can enter the discussion at their convenience, and you can watch the discussion as it happens.

Because Northeastern has purchased licenses for faculty and students, all faculty are granted Pro accounts when they log in through Blackboard, and when the VoiceThread is created through Blackboard and linked correctly, a gradebook column will automatically be created. Faculty can grade in VoiceThread and have the grade sent directly to the Blackboard gradebook. In addition, if you use the Blackboard integration feature, you don’t have to go through the process of sharing the VoiceThread individually with students. Adding the link through the Blackboard integration feature will grant students in your course access to the VoiceThread automatically.

VoiceThread uses Shibboleth integration, which should automatically create an account for both faculty members and students.

Example of VoiceThread used in a course

In the example below, VoiceThread is used for a radiology case study. Press the play button in the bottom left to see the audio recording and comments played back to you in the order they were created.

Click the right-facing arrow in the bottom right to move to the next slide and hear and see the comments on that slide. Click the box icon in the top right to view this in full screen.

Other notable examples may be found here:

Creating a VoiceThread

In order to use the integration features of Blackboard like automated course population, you should access VoiceThread through Blackboard. The video below will walk you through creating a VoiceThread through Blackboard and providing that link to students in your Blackboard course.

Standard Uses

Creating a VoiceThread without Grading

Adding Gradebook Integration to an Already-created VoiceThread

If you choose, VoiceThread can create an assignment for any VoiceThread item you add gradebook integration for. The video below shows you how to create an assignment out of a VoiceThread you have made and assess student responses to your VoiceThread.

Note that if you created a link from your course to the VoiceThread previously, you’ll need to recreate this link, enable evaluation on this new link, and delete the link you previously made. You can create an assignment out of a VoiceThread that you made previously, but you’ll need to create a new link from Blackboard in order to create the gradebook link itself. [You can’t enable grading on a previously-created link and access the assignment options].

Copying a VoiceThread for Use in Another Section or Another Semester

You would generally use VoiceThread to allow the members of a class to talk with each other. As a result, any time you want to share a VoiceThread with a new closed group, you’ll need to make a copy of a VoiceThread. So you’ll most likely be making a copy at the beginning of the new semester and when you would like to deploy a VoiceThread to different sections in the same semester.

Creating or Uploading your Avatar Image

Other Uses

In this scenario, an instructor asks each student to create a VoiceThread and then other students are required to comment on other students’ VoiceThread. This is a multi-stop process because of the gradebook integration features. Note that you’ll see a lot of new gradebook columns: One for the original assignment of creating the VoiceThread, and another for each of the assignments to comment on a different student’s VoiceThread. As a result, this process is only recommended for smaller classes if gradebook integration is to be used.

For Instructors: Assigning Students to Create a VoiceThread with Gradebook Integration

For Students: Creating a VoiceThread and Submitting it as an Assignment

For Students: Giving your Teacher Edit Permission

Note that most students will not need to follow this process. This is only used when the instructor would like to assign a student’s VoiceThread to other students to comment on, while using the Blackboard gradebook integration for those comments.

For Students: Creating a group project in VoiceThread

For Instructors: Creating a Comments Assignment from a Student VoiceThread with Blackboard Gradebook Integration

Note that most students will not need to follow this process. This is only used when the instructor would like to assign a student’s VoiceThread to other students to comment on, while using the Blackboard gradebook integration for those comments.

Support Documentation


Connection errors

If you’re getting a message that there was an error connecting to the page, you will need to enable third-party cookies. The video below will show you how to do this. Alternatively, you may also consider switching browsers as we have seen this happen more in Internet Explorer than other browsers.

Trouble recording comments

If you’re unable to record a comment, try updating your Flash.