FAQ Faculty and Staff Captioned Media General

Do I always have to use captioned versions of films, film clips, YouTube/Vimeo videos, and other media?

YES. ALL films, clips, videos, and other media must be captioned in accordance withFederal Law andUniversity policy. If there is a student in your classroom who has a Captioned Media accommodation, you...

What is the difference between captions and subtitles?

Subtitles are generally intended for people who are able to hear. Subtitles are most often used to display a different language than the one spoken in the video. Subtitles only include the words spoken.

Captions are intended to provide access to people who are unable to hear. Unlike subtitles, captions include the spoken word, sound effects, music description, punctuation, and identification of speakers.

Why aren’t automatic captions (speech recognition) sufficient for a video shown in class?

Automatic captions do not meet caption quality or legal standards that apply to video captioning as a whole. Captions must relay the speaker’s exact words with correct spelling, punctuation, and grammar with 99% accuracy.Captions may not be paraphrased and must honor the original tone and intent of the speaker. Sounds, music, and other environmental noises must also appear.


Is a transcript of a video sufficient?

If the media has audio and video, you need to have it captioned. A transcript is not sufficient.

Does the media need captioning if the instructor owns the video?

If the video will be shown in the classroom or is required to be watched outside of class time by the students, regardless of whether it is instructor-owned or campus-owned, it will need to be captioned.

Why do videos need to be captioned if there’s a realtime captioner or ASL Interpreter in the class?

It is impossible for the student to watch the video and watch the captions/interpreters simultaneously. Information will be missed on one end or the other, thereby missing portions of the captions/interpreting.

The captioner or interpreter may be unfamiliar with the terminology, names, locations, song lyrics, or subject-specific information contained in the video. This unfamiliarity may result in inaccurate translation/captions. Interpreters and captioners are able to translate one voice at a time. If...

What is included in Captioned Media accommodations?

The Captioned Media accommodation applies to any media that is presented, posted, and/or required to be viewed in a course. Students with a Captioned Media Accommodation must have equal access to all media-related material in a course.

What is a Captioned Media accommodation?

The Captioned Media accommodation applies to any media that is pre-recorded and played during a lecture, posted on a course website, or otherwise included in the course. For instance, if you have a folder of films or videos of interest on your bCourses site, those should be available in captioned formats.

If you post recordings of lectures, office hours, discussions, et cetera, those all should include captions, even if a Realtime Captioner was present during the live session.