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By Allan Wilson on Wednesday 21st March, 2012 at 12:05pm
We've been looking for an alternative to the Voice Notes / Voice Comment feature of Microsoft Word / Windows XP, as a tool for allowing a pupil to use their voice to record a spoken answer to a question in a Word document. Unfortunately, this feature cannot be used adequately in later versions of the Windows operating system. Note that this is NOT speech recognition - voice notes / comments allowed a recording to be embedded in a Word Document so that a teacher could listen to it later.
Vocaroo is an online digital recorder, storing the voice file on the web and allowing a link to the file to be embedded in a Word document (or any other electronic document). The computer obviously has to be online for recording the answer and playing it back. Vocaroo is not the perfect solution to the Voice Notes / Comments problem, but it is certainly worth a look.
To use Vocaroo, alongside a worksheet in Word, make sure that the computer has an internet connection and a microphone, and go to the Vocaroo web site. Vocaroo will tell you if it does not see a microphone. The Vocaroo web site is very simple to use - just click where it says 'Click to Record' and agree to allow Vocaroo to access your microphone.
You will be given a chance to listen to your recording and re-record it if you are not happy with it. Once you are happy with the quality of the recording, click on 'Click Here to Save'. You will be given a link to your recording, which you can copy to Word and paste into the document as your 'answer'.
To answer a second question, go back to the Vocaroo web site and re-load the page - otherwise you could accidentally record your second answer on top of the first one. Then just record your new answer and copy and paste the web link for your answer the way you did before. When you finish, save and close the document.
A teacher could then check the answers by moving the mouse to each link and pressing CTRL-Click to open the web link. The recorded answer will be played automatically and can be replayed, if necessary.
Vocaroo isn't just useful for recording answers to questions in a worksheet - it could be a valuable tool for recording notes on, say, information on a web site. Vocaroo also integrates well with social media sites such as Facebook, allowing you to add voice recordings to your Facebook Page, etc.