About timing of voiceover

Jun 30, 2015

Hello great heroes,

I have a question about using voiceover. I never used it before and I am not sure about the timing.

Do you think it is a better way to synchronize the text and the audio together? Or is it better to play the audio a little bit earlier and then the test will appear?


Thank you very much!

Happy Canada Day (to those who celebrate!)



5 Replies
Joe Waddington

I like to sync my on-screen text with the narration most of the time, but it depends on the text.

However, you have to be careful here - if all you're narration is doing is reading the words on the screen, then you might be better off w/o the narration. The learner can read the text faster than your narrator can narrate.

Usually when I have narration, the narrator conveys the majority of the information, and i put bullets or short sentences on the screen that capture / summarize what they are saying. These I have animate in as the narrator hits them. It allows the scan while the narration goes on, and captures the important pieces.

Wanting Zou

Hi Joe, 

Thank you for your thorough comment! I agree with what you said that it depends on the text as well. 

I am doing a big course with condensed on-screen texts and full narration, which means bullet points will show up on the screen while the complete info will be offered by the narration. 

One of my concern is:

for example: (let's say introducing the Statue of Liberty)

Narration (copied from Wikipedia): 

"The Statue of Liberty is a colossal neoclassical sculpture on Liberty Island in New York Harbor in New York City, in the United States. The copper statue, designed by Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi, a French sculptor, was built by Gustave Eiffel and dedicated on October 28, 1886. It was a gift to the United States from the people of France."

For this piece of information, I would put 3 bullet points:

1. Located in New York City 

2. Designed by Gustave Eiffel 

3. A gift to the U.S. 

I can sync these three points with the three sentences. I would concern that sometimes the bullet point would appear before this piece of information being introduced by the narrator. I was not sure if this would obstruct learners' learning pace or experience. Like for the first point, if I make the bullet point appear as soon as the sentence starts, does it make sense to look at the screen and listen to "colossal neoclassical sculpture..."?

If the sentence is much longer and the core information appears a little later, i thought it would be better to delay the appearance of the bullet point. 

What do you think? 


Thank you! 

Wanting Zou

Hello Tammy,

Thank you for your reply! Yeah I do agree with you! it is a pleasant thing to see that the audio and the animation can finally come together. After working on one project for like 4 months, it is already like my baby and I just hope everything is OK with him/her (haven't decided the gender lol) 

I was replying to Joe and he tends to agree with you on sync. My concern is just that sometimes the bullet point may appear faster than the correspondent part in the narration. I was wondering if learners would feel confused or lost their attention if they see something different from what hear first. What do you think about this issue? 

Hope I made my concern clear :) 


Thank you! 

Tammy Knoll-Anderson

Ah ha. Of course. This is where the creativity comes in which takes a bit of work and finesse. I will have the 3 bullets animate in by paragraph which will separate each item on the timeline.

Then, I break the audio into 3 parts (copy, paste, then cut out what is not related to that bullet) and set up the audio to synch with the bullet entry. The next bullet and audio is lined up to enter after the audio for bullet 1 has completed. Then I do the same for bullet 3.

This way, the learner sees the bullet text that is being referenced in the audio much like an instructor-led presentation.

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