How to Make Chapters in Audacity

By Seamus Islwyn

Splitting a long digital audiobook or podcast into chapters makes its content easier to navigate. Instead of fast-forwarding and rewinding through the audiobook on your portable media player, you can jump ahead or backward to the chapter you want to hear. Creating chapters also makes it easier to find the point in an audiobook at which you stopped listening. Use the Label function in the free, open-source Audacity digital audio editor to split an audio file into chapters.

Step 1

Start Audacity. Go to "File," "Import" and "Audio." Double-click the audio file you want to split into chapters.

Step 2

Click the "Rewind" button to ensure the first chapter starts at the beginning of the audio file. Open the "Tracks" menu and click "Add Label at Selection."

Step 3

Type "Chapter 1" into the Label field that appears. Press "Enter."

Step 4

Click the point in the waveform where you want the first chapter to end and the second chapter to begin. To ensure the chapter marker is in the right position, use the "Play" button to preview the audio as you work. Repeat these steps for each chapter you want to create.

Step 5

Click "File" and "Export Multiple" when you're finished dividing the chapters. Choose a format — WAV or MP3, for example — from the "Export Format" drop-down menu, then type the location where you want to save the files into the "Export Location" box.

Step 6

Click the radio button next to "Labels" underneath "Split files based on." Select "Using Label/Track Name" in the "Name files" section.

Step 7

Select the "Export" button. Click the "OK" button repeatedly until Audacity has cycled through all of the chapters.