VideoScribe Instructor Guide

VideoScribe is an animation software that allows you to animate text and an extensive library of shapes and images on a digital whiteboard. You can customize the animations in multiple ways, as well as add voice-overs and a soundtrack to the final video product.
Cost Yes Free
Bandwidth Yes Low demand
Canvas Integration No Works outside of Canvas
Privacy Partial The VideoScribe software itself is FIPPA compliant; however, UBC’s license data is stored outside Canada.
Similar UBC-Supported Tools Kaltura and Camtasia are also centrally-supported video recording and editing tools.

What can I use it for?

You can use VideoScribe in your courses in multiple ways:

  • Creating course content that uses visuals to encourage student curiosity and cognitive processing of information
  • Having students use VideoScribe in creating content of their own for course activities or assignments
  • Asking students to create their own learning materials in whatever style works for them

What do I need to use VideoScribe?

A VideoScribe license

UBC provides a license for using the educational version of VideoScribe, and you will be covered by this license for free, once you send in a request.

Additional features are available with the pro version of VideoScribe, but you will need to purchase the pro version yourself, if you want to use it.

An account and the VideoScribe application

You will need to set up an account and use it to install the VideoScribe desktop application.

The application is available for Windows and Mac operating systems. Your computer will also need to meet some specifications to run the software, and you may wish to check the VideoScribe system requirements, if you’re on an older or slower machine.


  • You can request licenses on behalf of your students too, if VideoScribe will be part of a course activity, as the license is available to all active UBC students and employees.
  • The latest version of VideoScribe is recommended, to prevent crashing and freezing when you use the software. You can follow the steps for checking your version and downloading the most recent one on the VideoScribe site.

How do I use VideoScribe?

You first need to request a VideoScribe license, then set up an account and use it to install the VideoScribe desktop application.

Click any bar below for instructions and tips on using VideoScribe.

Request a VideoScribe license

To get started with VideoScribe, please send us a VideoScribe license request.

Your VideoScribe license will be assigned to the email address you provide in your request. If you have already been using VideoScribe on a trial basis, please provide the email you are using with your existing account.

Limitations of UBC's educational license

You can use VideoScribe to make engaging animated content with the educational license.

However, there are three limitations to be aware of before you begin.

  • The license does not include the "VideoScribe Anywhere" mobile app for iOS, so you would need to purchase the app separately, if you want to use it.
  • The license does not include premium images. You would need a separate subscription to purchase premium images, if you want to include them.
  • The license does not include removing the VideoScribe logo or adding your own logo to your videos. You would need to purchase the pro version, if you want to customize this.


  • You can request licenses on behalf of your students too, if VideoScribe will be part of a course activity, as the license is available to all active UBC students and employees.
  • You can compare the features available under different licenses, if you are interested in doing more with VideoScribe than the educational license allows.

Create an account and install VideoScribe

Once you've requested and received a VideoScribe license from us, you will create a Sparkol account to install VideoScribe on your computer. Sparkol is the company behind VideoScribe, so this step is the same as creating a VideoScribe account.

Create an account

  1. Visit the Sparkol sign-up page to create your account.
  2. You will need to enter your first name, last name, and email address exactly as they appeared in your VideoScribe request to us.
  3. Agree to the terms and conditions, and click Create Your Free Account.

Install VideoScribe

  1. Log in to your Sparkol account.
  2. Click Download next to VideoScribe.
  3. Click the download option applicable to your Windows setup:
  4. When the download is complete, open your File Explorer, go to your "Downloads" folder, and double-click the VideoScribe installation file (i.e., VideoScribe64.msi or VideoScribe.msi).
  5. Follow the VideoScribe setup wizard to finish the installation and launch VideoScribe.

  1. Log in to your Sparkol account.
  2. Click Download next to VideoScribe.
  3. Click Download Mac OS X.
  4. Go to your "Downloads" folder, and double-click the VideoScribe installation file (i.e., VideoScribe.dmg).
    • If you get an error, you may need to Ctrl-click the installation file instead, and select Open from the menu.
  5. When prompted, drag and drop the VideoScribe icon onto the "Applications" folder.


Create a video in VideoScribe

Once you've installed VideoScribe, you are ready to create your first animation. You have two main options for getting started: you can create an animation from scratch or customize an existing template.

  1. Open the VideoScribe application, enter your account username and password, and click Login.
  2. Choose how you will get started:
    • Click Create a New Scribe to start a new project with a blank canvas.
    • Click Template Scribes to start a project with a template canvas. Browse the options and click any template to open a copy of it you can immediately begin editing.
  3. Click the play icon (the one with a line behind it) to preview the animation at any time.
  4. Add elements to your canvas using the three buttons at the bottom right:
  5. Anything placed on the canvas will show up in your animation timeline at the bottom of the application and be animated by default. You can adjust defaults like timing and edit other aspects by selecting any element in the timeline and clicking an icon that appears on top of the image.
  6. Reorder any element by dragging and dropping it in the timeline.
  7. Use the toolbar at the top of the application to save your animation or add a soundtrack, record a voice-over, and more.
  8. When you are ready to create a video file of your animation, click the share icon next to the question mark in the upper toolbar and follow the prompts to publish your video as an .mp4 file, to a video-streaming service, or for use in PowerPoint.


  • "Scribes" is the term VideoScribe uses to refer to animations you make, whether you build one from scratch or use a template.
  • Use the arrow buttons and magnifying glass to move around your canvas when making or editing an animation.
  • You can change the colour and texture of your canvas, by clicking the paintbrush icon in the top toolbar.
  • Every animation has a hand that does the animating, and you can change what the hand looks like and even import your own hand to really personalize your video.
  • You can change the section of canvas that is in view at any point in your animation by setting the camera position.
  • Some elements may be locked in place so that they don’t get moved by accident, but you can change this clicking the lock icon that appears when you select the element in the timeline.
  • You can open an element's editable properties by double-clicking it on the canvas, instead of accessing it through the timeline.
  • VideoScribe provides video tutorials you may find helpful for creating scenes, setting up camera angles, adding sound, editing, and publishing your animations.
  • Check out VideoScribe's tips and techniques for information on animation techniques, element properties, and more!

Where can I get more support with VideoScribe?

Technical support

If you have trouble with VideoScribe:

Learn more

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