Software Tools for Asynchronous Content Creation

Teaching remotely, or in a blended context, often leads instructors to create content to allow for some or all instruction to take place asynchronously outside of the classroom. Using the basic capture and editing tools in Panopto, instructors can easily create instructional content for students to review on their own time.

However, some instructors may want to create asynchronous video content that has a higher production value, so it can be used over and over again in subsequent years of teaching the same material. We have put together a list of software (with free options) to cover tasks around video/audio capture, screenshot capture, video editing, and captioning for those instructors interested in raising the bar of their asynchronous content creation. Where applicable, we have listed both a basic and more advanced option, for both Apple and PC (Microsoft) operating systems.

Video Capture Tools

For instructors looking for alternative ways to capture video and audio with their machines, we have listed the following options for beginners and more advanced users.

Basic Video Capture Tools

Basic capture tools will facilitate screen capture and recording from the built-in webcam or external camera in a straightforward way without a lot of bells and whistles in the interface.

System Software Tutorial
MacOS Quicktime Screen recording tutorial
MacOS PhotoBooth (included with MacOS) Record video from camera to your Mac
Windows (XP to 10) & Mac0S (10.5) Debut Video Capture* Debut Capture support
Windows & MacOS Camtasia** Camtasia tutorials

* Free for non-commercial use
** 30-day free trial; $169 edu license; bundle with SnagIt (see below) $189

Advanced Video Capture Tools

The advanced capture tool will allow for sectional/full screen recording, create high quality video files with small file sizes, and can be used as an audio mixer or video switcher, among other options. This option will allow the closest functionality to Panopto by allowing capture of both camera and screen simultaneously.

System Software Tutorial
MacOS, Windows, Linux Open Broadcaster Software Wiki/Guides, Chat, Forums


Screenshot Capture Tools

Screenshot capture tools allow instructors to capture clean, clear images from their screens. Tools may allow full screen capture, specific window capture, partial screen capture, etc. This is particularly useful for those teaching with specific data, imagery, or software screens that need to be captured for class content.

Basic Screenshot Capture Tools

Screenshot capture tools are generally straightforward and easy to use for beginners or advanced users. Most will allow a full screenshot or grab a user-selected section of a screen, or grab a specific window on the desktop.

System Software Tutorial
MacOS Preview (included with MacOS) Preview screenshot tutorial
MacOS Screenshot (included with MacOS) Screenshot tutorial
Windows & MacOS SnagIt* SnagIt tutorials
Windows Snipping Tool (included with Windows OS) Snipping Tool tutorial

* 30-day free trial; $29.99 edu license available; bundle with Camtasia $189


Video Editing Tools

Video editing tools can range from very basic tools for making cuts to extremely complex special effects and editing capabilities.

Basic Video Editing Tools

If you need to make cuts in your video, add titles and transitions, or maybe add some intro music or try out some filters, a basic video editing tool should be appropriate.

System Software Tutorial
MacOS iMovie (included with MacOS) iMovie tutorials
Windows Windows Video Editor (included with Windows) Video Editor tutorial

Advanced Video Editing Tools

Take a look at the advanced options if your needs go beyond the basics: if you need to add animations (2d and 3d), complex transitions, specialized editing for lighting and color, specialized audio editing, or create multiple versions of video renderings for different bandwidth or sizes. We recommend that you have a basic understanding of video editing before trying out an advanced software program.

System Software Tutorial
MacOS & Windows DaVinci Resolve DaVinci Resolve Training
MacOS & Windows Adobe Premiere Pro* Adobe Premiere Pro training

* Requires Adobe Cloud subscription $19.99/mo (educational price)



As you complete your asynchronous video content, be sure to look into your captioning options. If you are using Panopto to distribute your content through Canvas (recommended), you may easily add their machine ASR captions to your videos. Once they are added, the captions can be further edited for accuracy (ASR captions are not ADA-compliant).

If you have a funding source, you may request ADA-compliant human captioning from Panopto via AV Services at the cost of $1.50/minute. Check with your department to see if there are funds available.