Editing in Audacity

Step 2: Edit

Adjusting Audio Levels

  • Move slider bars to adjust how loud the playback is, or how much audio is picked up from the microphone.

Audacity Editing Tools

Selecting and Editing

  • Click and drag the mouse over the audio you want to select-- this will highlight that audio or use the "I" Selection tool on the upper left hand corner.


  • After selecting, chose “Cut” from the Edit menu. This will delete the selected audio but save it to be pasted later.


  • Click the area of the track you wish to have the added audio and go to Edit > Paste.

Trimming the Beginning

  • Click the track just before where you want the audio to start. Go to Edit > Select > Track Start to Cursor. This will highlight the beginning of the track. Press Delete on the keyboard.

Trimming the End

  • With the Selection Tool, click just after where you want the track to end. Go to Edit > Select > Cursor to Track End. This will highlight from the cursor to the end of the track. Press Delete.

Mixing and Adding Extras


  • To edit more efficiently, spread out the waves. To do this, look for the magnifying glass with a +sign (this is the zoom in icon; to zoom out use the - sign). Click it a few times so that the waves are spread out.
  • Click "play" and start listening to the audio.Note: it is a good idea to to confirm that you want this audio deleted, so always listen first!
  • When using the audio control buttons (play, stop, pause), make sure to push the stop button or you won't be able to highlight or delete selections.
  • Make sure to SAVE often. To save the audacity project, go to "File" tag --> "save project as" --> save as .aup
  • More Tips ("Master your MP3s with Audacity," CNET.com)

Exporting Audio

To export, go to File>Export Audio, which will open a window asking you what you want to export the file as.

The audio file can also be exported in pieces. If you only want to export a portion of the file from Audacity, use the Selection tool to highlight the portion of the file you want to export and go to File>Export Selected Audio, which will open the same window with the same export options.

The options include:

  • MP3
  • WAV
  • AIFF
  • MP2

Source: Butler University podcasting libguide 

MP3 is "a digital audio encoding format using a form of lossy data compression" (Read more on Wikipedia) and is a popular file format that is easily read by most players. To export as mp3, go to "File" --> "export at MP3"

Add ID3 Tags (information on the file that will show up in players like iTunes):

  • Title
  • Artist
  • Album
  • Track
  • Year
  • Genre