OBS Guide for Online Teaching 2021

Full OBS Guide for Online Teaching

With the pandemic still dictating the direction of the world, most schools have transitioned to full or part time online classes. No matter what grade you are teaching, first grade or all the way up to college, you are most likely facing software that you have not used before. 

In this article I will explain to you the basics of OBS Studio with which you can record your lectures, or live stream. Online classes are particularly difficult on those students that thrive in a classroom setting and need the professors to talk them through the material. 

Why OBS Studio?

OBS Studio is a recording and streaming software that is entirely free to use with no sign up or free trial. It also runs on all major operating softwares, Mac OS, Windows and Linux. In addition to that it requires very little resources from your computer, the software runs on basically any device.

Step 1

Head to OBS Studio and download the version that fits your operating system. Download and install OBS Studio.

OBS guide for online teaching

Step 2

Familiarize yourself with OBS Studio.

OBS guide for online teaching

In the bottom left corner you have your Scenes. A scene is a collection of Sources, middle. The Audio Mixer shows your audio sources and Scene Transition controls the animation when switching between scenes.

Step 3

In order to record your lectures, you need to add an Audio Input source so that OBS can capture your voice when giving the lecture. 

Click the + in the source tab and select Audio Input Capture. OBS Studio will now ask you to specify which audio device you would like to connect. If you have multiple microphones, select the one you prefer, if you only have your laptop onboard microphone, select that.

If you would like to record yourself while giving the lecture, you can do that by adding a video source.

Click the + again in the source tab and select Video Capture Device. This will most likely be your laptop camera but if you have an external one, make sure to select the right one.

Step 4

If you now press the Start Recording button, OBS Studio would capture and record your voice as well as yourself through the webcam. The last source that needs to be added is a Window Capture.

The Window Capture captures a specific software on your device. This for example could be Power Point, Excel, Word or whatever software you use in your lectures.

Click the + button in the source tab and select Window Capture.

OBS guide for online teaching

Here simply select the software you would like to capture. The software has to be running in order for OBS to capture it.

Final Step

Now your OBS Source box should look like this.

OBS guide for online teaching

In order to ensure you will find your lecture recordings later on. Click the Settings button in the bottom right corner of your OBS screen. Locate Output, then Recording.

OBS guide for online teaching

Here you can change the recording’s destination as well as file format and recording quality.

This is how you set up OBS Studio to record your lectures. Speaking from my own experience, lecture recordings help us students tremendously. We appreciate the time you put into this instead of only providing the Power Point slides.

If you have further questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to me and I will be more than happy to assist you with any technical difficulties you might have.

If you would like to know more about potentially live streaming your online classes, this guide might be helpful: How To Stream on Twitch: Streaming and Setup Basics


My name is Luk and I am here to help you set up your live stream. I believe live streams are one of the best forms of communicating with your target audience. Let’s get to work!

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