Video Transcription and Video Analysis

There are several good solutions for the transcription and analysis of video data. One option is to make direct use of video transcription software, another is to extract the audio track of the video and to transcribe this using conventional audio transcription software.


1. Video transcription and analysis with Transana

Transana is a video transcription program with numerous different functions. It was developed by the Wisconsin Center for Education Research at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. To be read the video material must be available on the computer in MPG, WMV or AVI. The program has no problems handling large amounts of data. Eleven different language versions are available and after a brief familiarization period the program is easy to use (the start operation is not intuitive). Like with f4 a key combination controls the playback (Ctrl + S to play, stop and automatically rewind). A MAC OSX version is also available. The USB footswitch supports transcription with Transana. Up to version 2.12 it is free of charge. The new version 2.2 costs 50$.

Transana Website and discussionboard (An english tutorial is included in the program itself - Help menu - tutorial).

For german speaking people: Here you can learn how to set up your first project: Transcribing with Transana by Oliver Ehmer - external link


2. Videoanalysis with ELAN, EXMARaLDA, TASX, Anvil 

"Comparison of multimodal annotaion tools - workshop report" is a very good paper to read about serveral costfree annotation tools that were developed in research context the last years. The tools offer a lot of possibilities for researchers, especially when they are analysing videorecordings! 


3. Extracting a video’s audio track in MP3 format

If you only require the audio track of a video file or a DVD in order to transcribe it, you can proceed as follows. Your PC must be equipped with the appropriate playback software and have access to the video data, or be connected to a DVD player.

1. Download Recorder N°23 (or audacity) and open it.
2. Familiarize yourself with the operations of N°23, enter the location where you wish to save your data and test the recording while playing your video material.
3. After the test, start recording with Recorder N°23. All the sound your PC picks up will be recorded as an MP3 file.
4. Open your video file on your PC as usual (e.g. with Windows Media Player) and play it.
5. Stop recording when you wish. The sound track will now be available in MP3 format in the subdirectory you stipulated.
6. You can transcribe the MP3 file with transcription software such as f4.

Quick extraction of audio tracks using SwitchPlus

If you feel that the solution above is too longwinded a process for you, you can extract audio data within a fraction of real time using the software SwitchPlus. You simply tell SwitchPlus which file needs extracting and in which format you wish to save the audio data. Click on “convert” and within a matter of moments you have access to the audio track in MP3, OGG or another format. SwitchPlus costs around $20 and is distributed by NCH. More information at: