VideoAnt Interface
Distance Ed, Video, Web 2.0

Tech Tip Tuesday – Take Notes on YouTube Videos with VideoAnt

What is VideoAnt?


Do you host your lectures on YouTube (unlisted) or share other videos with your students? If so, you and your students can use VideoAnt to take notes or leave comments during video playback, anywhere on the video timeline. VideoAnt is a free online application created by the University of Minnesota’s College of Education and Human Development. Check out the video below to learn more.

What Does an Ant Look Like?

I tested VideoAnt by uploading IT’s recent Tech Minute: Classroom Technology video. Take a look at the interface below. During playback, I quickly added two notes. Notes are flagged on the video timeline and appear on the right with corresponding timestamps.

VideoAnt Interface

Click on the image to zoom.

Exporting and Sharing Your Ants

When it comes to sharing, VideoAnt gives you and your students a few different options. First, I tested the Embed Code in OAKS. The VideoAnt interface (i.e., video and notes) displayed properly, but, unfortunately, my notes were not flagged correctly on the video timeline. Thus, I cannot recommend this method of sharing at this time.

VideoAnt Share Interface

You can also Export your notes or comments in a variety of formats. Here’s what the Text export looks like:

VideAnt Export Text

Finally, you and your students can share your VideoAnt via a link or make it Private and Add Users—similar to Google Docs.

VideoAnt Share Interface

Additional Resources

Ideas for Instructors: 

Video Tutorials:

airsketch icon
instructional technology, iPad, Mobile, Presentation

App of the Week: AirSketch

Turn your iPad into a wireless whiteboard! Annotate PDF documents and images live.  You can project PDF documents such as exported PowerPoints, to a computer on the same local network then annotate them in real time. Airsketch works like a mirror image of your iPad (viewed inside of the Airsketch App) that is projected by another computer through a shared website.

In other words, it does not connect your iPad wirelessly through the projector — it allows you to display your Airsketch to a website, which is projected by another computer.

For example, when you open Airsketch on the iPad, there is a small wireless icon in the bottom left. When you select that icon, it gives you the IP address that your display can be seen. When you open Firefox (or another web browser) on a classroom computer and put that address in the URL, you will see the same screen as on the iPad.

From there, you can display PDFs (but not PPTs unless they are converted to PDFs) via Dropbox; select the Send-To icon in Dropbox located in the upper right. You can also show images on your iPad’s camera roll.

Price: Free, $9.99 for all the features

Platform: iPad only

More Information:

Dear TLT
Best Practices, Dear TLT, TLT

Dear TLT: Can I Embed a VoiceThread Lecture in OAKS Content?

Dear TLT,

Is it possible to embed a VoiceThread lecture in OAKS content? I know my students access VoiceThread via the Multimedia Resources widget, to make comments, but what if my lecture is view only?


Professor C. Connors
Genetic Biology


Dear Professor Connors,

Great question! Yes, you can. To embed view-only VoiceThread lectures in OAKS content, follow these eight steps:

1.  Log into OAKS and open your course homepage. Click Access VoiceThread for this Course under the Multimedia Resources widget (on the right).


2.  Hover over the VoiceThread that you want to embed and click Share.

3.  Click on the Basic tab and select Embed.

4.  Uncheck the Comment box, leaving and allow anyone to: View checked. Click Copy Embed Code.

5. Go back to OAKS, open Contentand select a module to store your lecture. Click Create a File.

6.  Enter a Title to name the file and click on the Insert Stuff icon.

7.  Click Enter Embed Code. Paste the embed code from VoiceThread and click Next.

8.  Make sure your VoiceThread displays properly and click Insert. Click Publish and exit.

Please contact your instructional technologist, if you have additional questions or concerns, and check out our upcoming training sessions at

Best regards,



Have a question for Dear TLT?  

Submit the following form to see it featured on our blog:

Professor Curtis “Curt” Connors is from what comic book series? The first faculty member to email, with the correct answer, will receive a TLT tumbler!

Assessment, Innovative Instruction, instructional technology, Pedagogy, TLT, Web 2.0

Get Geddit to track understanding in your classroom

UPDATE: On 3/14/15, we received an email from Geddit notifying us that their servers will be shutdown on July 1, 2015. Contact your instructional technologist to review possible alternatives.


What is Geddit?

Geddit is an online tool that enables instructors to track understanding, instantly and privately, in their classrooms. Geddit is easy for students to use during class, and it can be viewed on any device with an internet browser. It takes just a moment for instructors to invite students to join a class and set up a lesson. There are many benefits to using Geddit in your courses, such as incorporating Just-in-Time Teaching, and we will touch on just a few of advantages and features in this overview.

Geddit Check-ins Overview
Geddit Check-ins Overview


How does it work?

During class, students can “check in” by self-assessing their understanding of the current topic being covered in class. Instructors can launch poll, multiple-choice, short answer (140 characters), long answer (unlimited characters), and math questions and view results in real-time.

Student Check-in View
Student Check-in View


Why should you try it?

The information tracked by Geddit makes it possible for instructors to adapt their teaching and the amount of time spent on certain topics to meet students’ needs. A quick glance at Geddit during class provides valuable information as challenging concepts are introduced and discussed.

Student reported understanding on the cell cycle. Green and blue colors indicate that most students indicate understanding.
Student reported understanding on the cell cycle. Green and blue colors indicate that most students responded with “I’ve got this!” or “I’m OK with this.”


The real benefit and strength of this web-based app is the variety of information both instructors and students can review after class. Instructors can view class understanding as a whole, along with responses from individual students. It is easy to view trends and fluctuations in class understanding by topic over the length of the class period. Students indicating confusion on certain topics are flagged allowing instructors to easily follow-up and manage struggling students. It is also possible to review responses to any questions asked through Geddit. Importantly, instructors can export all check-in information and question responses to a CSV file for sorting and grading purposes.

Geddit Check-ins Over time
Geddit Check-ins Over time


A further advantage of using Geddit is that students can revisit their own reports from a lesson and quickly see which topics they flagged as not being very clear. The report highlights topics students should study.


Students can easily find out which topics they need to review after class and before exams.
Students can easily find out which topics they need to review after class and before exams.


Where can you get Geddit?

Visit and sign up for a free account. Try Geddit on your most challenging classes.