Automated transcription to speed up online course creation

Introduction: how automated transcription can help speed up the creation of online courses

When it comes to creating online courses based on an existing non-digital course, transcription can play a big role in speeding up the process. By recording and transcribing lectures, you can create a written record of the course content that can be easily edited and shared. Once edited and improved, this is a great basis for your recording, either by being super prepared by going through this process of recording, transcribing, and editing, or simply because you use the edited transcript as a script for your teleprompter recording. Additionally, this text can be used to create study guides and quizzes, or even embedded directly into your course website. In short, transcription services can help ensure that your course content is accurate and easy to understand, making the process of creating an online course simpler and more efficient—especially if the automated transcription is used as the method of choice.

Automated transcription: what is it and how does it work?

Transcription is the process of converting an audio or video recording into text. It is often used to create a transcript of a meeting, interview, or lecture. Automated transcription is a type of transcription that uses software to convert the audio or video recording into text. There are several different types of software that can be used for automated transcription. Some use algorithms to transcribe the audio or video, while others use machine learning to improve their accuracy over time.

Personally, I am using happyscribe and amberscript for any material that already exists (e.g., translating an English course to a German course, which might require the upload of already existing videos). I use spoke for transcriptions “on the fly”, as it also produces transcription pages that are easy to share (to the benefit of the students).

Advantages of using Automated transcription for online course creation

  • Transcripts can be used for revision purposes. The raw transcript is a testament of how I said something initially, for example, during a lecture. This is valuable content and a great basis for an online course. However, the way I have explained something, might not be the best way. Or I might lose structure during a spontaneous talk. All these things can easily be rectified once the transcript is in front of you. While other advantages are preserved, for example, that the transcript is in a natural spoken language.
  • Transcripts can be used for quality assurance reasons. I like to pass the transcript to others before recording the online course.
  • Transcripts can be used for assessment purposes. Easily create open-ended and closed questions by copy-pasting text from the transcript and making small edits.
  • Transcripts can be used to provide feedback to the learners. You can copy and paste the relevant parts of the transcript to provide hints or solutions to any assessment items.

Of course, the transcripts also help once the course is live:

  • Transcripts make your courses more accessible.
  • Transcripts can improve the learner experience: I personally like to listen to content and reading the same words simultaneously. This really helps remembering stuff.
  • Transcripts can help with course navigation. If transcripts are added to the videos, the search function of your LMS becomes really strong.


As online education continues to grow in popularity, so does the need for easier and faster ways to create course content. One way to speed up the process is through automated transcription. Educators can quickly and easily create course materials by using software that can automatically transcribe text into digital form. This technology has a number of benefits. This includes: reducing the amount of time spent on transcription, increasing consistency, and freeing up more time for other tasks.