Centre for Digital Humanities

How to use Transkribus at a discount rate as an UU user

Transkribus can make your historical research a lot easier. Many researchers, libraries and archives already use Transkribus to automatically transcribe and digitize handwritten or printed historical pages. As an Utrecht University employee you can now use this service at a big discount. Read in this manual how that works.

What is Transkribus?

Transkribus is a comprehensive tool for the digitization, AI-powered text recognition, transcription and searching of historical documents, from any place, any time, and in any language. Take a look at some projects here that were already realized with Transkribus. READ-COOP is the European Cooperative Society that provides the Transkribus platform.

Through the READ-COOP subscription the Centre for Digital Humanities has purchased, Utrecht University is now an official READ-COOP member. This means that everyone with an affiliation to Utrecht University (researchers, teachers, staff, etc.) can use this service at a discounted rate.

How does it work?

Everything except the text recognition proper is free of charge in Transkribus. All other services – such as training the model, layout analysis, using Transkribus for manual transcribing etc. – are free of charge. Credits are only needed for the actual text recognition feature Transkribus offers. Do you want to get started with this? Then follow the instructions below:

  • First register as a new user with your UU email address. Everyone gets 500 free credits upon signup. After that, credit consumption is based on two factors: the type of material (printed or handwritten) and the text recognition engine that is used: PyLaia or HTR+.
  • Calculate the necessary number of credits you need for your project here.
  • To be able to buy these credits (or other READ-COOP products) at the discounted rate, email the sales team at READ-COOP via projects@readcoop.eu.
  • Mention in the email that you are a Utrecht University user and add the UU billing address they can use for the invoice, including your own (project) WBS-number. The sales team will then book the needed credits to your account at the reduced rate. This account does not have to be a buying account with membership status.

Transkribus Scholarship Programme for teachers and students

Are you a student or teacher? Then take a look at the Transkribus Scholarschip Programme. Through this global programme you can apply to get free credits to use for the handwritten text recognition technology in Transkribus. Transkribus Scholarships are granted based on projects: this means that you need to apply with a specific project that you plan to spend the credits of your Scholarship on. The programme is open to students and teachers from any programme or discipline.


  • Do you have questions on how to use Transkribus or purchase the discounted credits? The READ-COOP team is happy to help you on your way through projects@readcoop.eu.
  • In case you run into technical difficulties with Transkribus, you can reach out to info@readcoop.eu, which is the Transkribus helpdesk.
  • Once you get started, the Transkribus website also offers a substantial number of useful How-to guides.

Transkribus workshop

Interested in working with Transkribus, but you don’t know where to start? Together with the Utrecht University Library, the Centre for Digital Humanities organizes tailor-made Transkribus workshops for humanities staff on demand. We will organize the workshops as soon as there is sufficient interest. Mail us at cdh@uu.nl for more information.


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