Student Accessibility Services

Audio Recording Lectures and Lecture PowerPoint Slides

We recognize that not every individual utilizes the same software to meet their accommodation needs, so we want to provide you with several choices, so you can choose the option which is best for you.

Livescribe Echo SmartPen

A Livescribe Echo SmartPen is a pen with an embedded computer and digital audio recorder. When utilized with Livescribe notebooks, students are able to synchronize their written notes with the audio recordings of course lectures. Students can also utilize the Livescribe Echo Desktop on their personal computers to upload the audio records and their notes.

Livescribe Echo SmartPen demonstration and instructional video

Livescribe Echo SmartPen Desktop App demonstration and instructional video

Downloading Livescribe Echo Desktop

Students utilizing Livescribe Echo SmartPens can download the Livescribe Echo Desktop to manage the audio recordings connected with their notes. Scroll halfway down the page to select either the Windows or Mac versions on the website. The following videos provide support for downloading the Echo Desktop on Windows computers and support for downloading the Echo Desktop on Mac computers.

Resources for Utilizing the Livescribe Echo SmartPen

​Livescribe has various resources to help support users, including an instructional guide on the Echo Desktop, an instructional guide on the Echo SmartPen, and a basics guide on setting up and using the Echo SmartPen. The following videos are a brief tutorial of the Mac version on the Livescribe Echo Desktop and how to take notes and record with the SmartPen.

Support for Livescribe Echo SmartPen

If students registered with SAS need additional support in understanding how to utilize the Livescribe Echo SmartPen, they can request an assistive technology appointment with SAS staff through their Accommodate account. can record conversations using the application on your phone or through a web browser. You can import or sync recordings from other services. Get real-time streaming transcripts and within minutes, rich, searchable notes with text, audio, images, speaker ID, and key phrases. Share or export voice notes to inform others and get on the same page. Create groups to invite collaborators and keep organized. You can even snap photos (e.g., of a whiteboard, or a speaker or presentation slide at an event) during a recording and they will be inserted inline with your transcripts. There is no cost to using the default Otter Free plan – you get 600 minutes of transcription every month and the plan does not expire. If you run out of minutes, please connect back to SAS to discuss options.

To easily review the transcription, you can simply play back what you recorded in You can also export the recording to a .txt file for free.

Blackboard Materials

Most professors provide access to their relevant materials via Blackboard. If they do not, we suggest contacting your instructors for these items, specifically access to their PowerPoint presentations. 

Panopto and Zoom Meetings

Both platforms can be recorded and posted on Blackboard for later viewing. If you receive the accommodation of “Audio Recording of Lectures,” we suggest contacting your professor to see if they are utilizing either of these methods. If you need further support, please do not hesitate to reach out to our office. 

If your instructor needs any technical support, they should contact IT Services by submitting a ticket through Service Hub. For immediate assistance, instructors should call (319) 273-5555.

If you have any questions, concerns, or need support, please contact SAS at (319) 273-2677 Relay 711,, or GIL 118.