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Adding chapters to your video can help students navigate your multimedia content. Read below to learn more.

If you've ever watched a DVD, you’re probably familiar with the concept of chapters. They allow viewers to jump ahead to different parts of a video based on descriptors that the creator has provided. While not as pedagogically effective as breaking your longer videos into smaller chunks, in a pinch it helps to graft an organizational structure onto your video and allow students to jump to a section that they're looking for.

What is a Chapter?

A Kaltura video player with the chapters menu exposed.A chapter is a specific marker you can add to the timeline of your video.

When you add a chapter marker to your video:

  • An icon will display in the upper left corner of the video player for viewers, revealing all chapters for the video when clicked.
  • Clicking any of the chapter markers will jump the video playhead to that spot.
  • You're also able to add a title, description, thumbnail, and tags.
  • The data you add to it is searchable within the chapter menu.
Note that if you record a PowerPoint presentation using Kaltura Capture, it will automatically generate chapter markers whenever a slide advances.

Whys, Requirements, Caveats

Why You Might Want to Add Chapters

  • You have a long video that you want to organize into "sections"


  • An existing video within "My Media"


  • The chapter title/description may be difficult to read if the thumbnail contains text
  • The chapter title/description gets cut off in player if too many characters are used

How to Add Chapters

  1. Within Canvas, enter any of your courses and click on "My Media" in the left navigation that appears.
  2. Locate the video to which you want to add chapters and click the pencil icon in its row.
  3. Click on the "Timeline" tab below the video preview.
  4. Click the bookmark icon on the left side of the timeline. If you hover your mouse over it a small dialogue box will appear displaying the text "Create a new Chapter."

A screenshot of the "timeline" tab (with "timeline" circled), with the icon to add a chapter circled.

  1. Fill in the fields. See below to learn about the sections and individual fields within them.

Chapter Thumbnail

This section allows you to select or upload an image of what you'd like to appear behind the title and description of the chapter.

  • Auto will choose the frame that's present in the video at the chapter's timecode.
  • Upload allows you to upload your own image file.

Time and Tags

Here you can fine-tune the timecode of a chapter marker and add keywords that facilitate searches.

  • Use the timecode field to put the chapter marker exactly at the point you want it. (It can be tricky to get it exactly where you want it by playing the video or dragging the scrubber on the timeline.)
  • The large text box allows you to enter search tags. When chapters display in the player, viewers have the option to search, so adding search tags may facilitate your students' ability to find relevant content.

Chapter Information

This block allows you to add a title and description for the chapter marker.

  • The Chapter Title will be the first line of text that displays when students open the chapter menu in the player.
  • The Chapter Description displays a few lines of text after the chapter title in the chapter menu in the player.
  1. When you're done entering your chapter settings, click "Save" in the block in the lower right corner.

A screenshot of all the chapter details.

Tips for Adding Chapters

  • Avoid creating chapter thumbnails that have text on them. If you upload a chapter thumbnail that has text on it, the chapter information that you add will end up on top of it, making it difficult to read. You may want to upload a simple colored background if the default chapter thumbnail has text on it.
  • Try using PowerPoint to make a chapter thumbnail. Create a widescreen presentation and design a slide that can be the background behind your title/description.
  • Keep it short. Long titles and descriptions may get cut off.

How to Delete Chapters

Deleting chapters is easy!

  1. Within the "Timeline" tab in your video details, click on any of the chapter markers you've set.
  2. Scroll down to the bottom of the page and click the red "Delete Chapter" link.

A screenshot of chapter settings, with a chapter marker circled on the timeline and the words "delete chapter" circled at the bottom.

Have additional questions about video? Contact Multimedia Services at .