Can I create a “Watch” assignment in VoiceThread for a YouTube video?

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Yes! You can embed a YouTube video in a VoiceThread presentation that you use for a Watch assignment. The beauty of adding YouTube videos in VoiceThread is that it removes pop-up ads while the video is playing and doesn’t show random “recommended videos” at its end, plus you can add a message or directions for students as additional slides to go with your YouTube videos.

You add a YouTube video to a VoiceThread presentation through its link. When you’re creating a new presentation:

  1. Click the Add Media link, then select URL from its dropdown menu. (You could also just click the big + symbol that appears on the page, then select URL.) This will open the “Enter the URL of a file to add” pop-up window.
  2. Paste the video’s link into the pop-up window’s text box.
  3. Click the Save button. The pop-up window will close, and you’ll see that VoiceThread is processing the video to add it to your presentation.
Screenshot showing the location of (2) the text box where you'll paste your YouTube link and (3) the Save button.
Steps 2 & 3: Adding a YouTube video to a VoiceThread presentation via its URL.

A caveat is that the YouTube video needs to be publicly available and not potentially violating copyright laws. If there’s an issue in this regard, VoiceThread will appear to be loading the video, but eventually the slide for it will just be a big, blank white page (i.e., you won’t get any kind of error message).

As a sample, I created a test VoiceThread presentation that brings together several popular YouTube cat videos. When creating it, I tried to add 5 videos, but one of them, Catvertising, couldn’t be imported.