What is screencasting? Why would you want to record your computer screen, anyway? Well, I’m glad you asked! Recording what is happening on your screen can be a pretty useful tool for teachers who want to create video tutorials or presentations for their classrooms, and many teachers are using screencasting tools in their flipped classroom models. But before you delve into what you’re going to do with your screencast, take a few moments to learn about the tools that are available to do the actual recording. They range from free to fairly expensive ($299) and offer a variety of functionality from simple recording to quite complex video editing. We’ve selected a few that we know to be some of the most popular screencasting tools in use today by teachers, students, and many others.
Camtasia is a software application designed especially for video screen capture for creating video tutorials and presentations. The interface is extremely simple to use, and for those of you who don’t want to take the intuitive route, there are tutorials embedded in the software. With Camtasia, you can record, edit, and view your videos, and it is appropriate for both beginning and advanced users. It offers a free 30 day trial, and is $299 to buy. While the price may seem high, understand that this is a pretty high powered software, and by far the best and most highly functional that we’re including in this list.
ScreenFlow4 is also a very robust screen capture and video editing tool that has a great user interface (literally click ‘Record’ and you’re in business), and whose video editing end is also quite excellent. Like many of the other options, it offers a free trial or a paid full version ($99.00). Those who like this product especially enjoy the easy to use video editing and streamlined workflow that the interface offers.
iShowU is a mid-range product ($20 for the Mac ‘classic product, $29.95 for the HD product, $59.95 for the HD Pro product). The focus on this product is really ease of use and speed (so that you’re not bogged down with a heavy interface and tools while you’re trying to cut your video product). The most basic version offers realtime capture, mouse follow, and the ability to record system and microphone audio. The more premium versions offer custom backgrounds, lack of watermark, webcam support, and keystroke recording. All around a great product for a mid range price and user friendly interface.