Note: As of September 30, 2016 Zaption has shut down.

What is Zaption?

Zaption is a website that allows you to add captions, questions and links to videos. It allows you to turn any YouTube video into a video lesson.


Here is how it could be used in a Language class:

Here is one of my own tutorial videos with a few zaptions added:


Or it could make watching a TED talk more accountable

How can it be used in the classroom?

  • Watch videos as a class as a hook/introduction to a new topic
  • Video review for a test or a quiz.
  • For individual study/review within the classroom
  • Flipped classroom: students watch Zaption videos at home to prepare for the next class

You can either create your own videos to use with Zaption, stitch together one or more videos on YouTube or choose an already created lesson from a large selection of lessons in Zaption’s gallery. You can even modify an existing Zaption lesson so this doesn’t need to take a lot of time/effort to include in your classroom.

A search term of “physics” brings up 36 video lessons created by other users:

Screen Shot 2016-04-12 at 11.14.36 AM


“Present” Zaption Lessons

A new feature with Zaption is you can present lessons to the class. The video will only show on the teacher’s screen but all answers are recorded on students’ own devices (computers, tablets, even smart phones). Students are given a “room code”, similar to how Kahoot works.

There is even an option for students to “raise a hand” if they don’t understand something in the video. The teacher sees exactly what part of the video there was a question at and can stop the video at any time to address the questions.


Final Thoughts

Zaption looks like an interesting way to add a bit more value to videos in the classroom. It is quite a flexible tool that can be used for independent study or for use with an entire class. Personally, I’m interested in using Zaption to enhance my growing collection of screencasts for various software programs I have created for my IT classes.

The free version seems to have a good amount of utility. The main difference between free and paid is that the paid version has detailed analytics for your videos and allows you to keep track of individual student responses, which may be useful for keeping track of student understanding over a period of time.

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