[Athen] Seeking opinions on captioning and foreign films

Martin, Vance S vmart02s at uis.edu
Wed Jan 9 12:33:57 PST 2019

I just dealt with a similar issue this fall. We had a faculty member using a Romanian film, The Flower Bridge. The film was in Romanian and had burned in English subtitles, however we are moving towards audio descriptions for all videos, and this film would make zero sense to someone who was visually impaired with only a transcript. Without information on the scene setup, it went from a living room, to a farm yard, to a cemetery with 3 lines of short spoken text total in those three scenes. I worked with our librarian who reached out to the film distributer who sent us the caption file. We turned that into a transcript, and then I had my student worker add in all the scene info and basically made a script from the caption file. The faculty member then uploaded that transcript/script with the video. The movie was about an hour and half, it took my student worker about 15 hours to do the audio descriptions. That's about 120 dollars for her time. We also sent the file to the film distributor as well.

We will be doing that for 6 more movies this Spring for a class which runs this summer.

We had discussed the idea of Romanian captions and transcripts, but the movie was not for a language class, but for a class on life in a places post-war.

Vance S. Martin, Ph.D.  
Campus Accessibility Specialist
Center for Online Learning, Research, and Service (COLRS)
University of Illinois Springfield
One University Plaza MS - Brookens Library 428
Springfield, IL 62703
217-206-8118  phone
Center for Online Learning, Research and Service
Accessibility Tips
Accessibility in the Trenches
vmart02s at uis.edu

Message: 2
Date: Tue, 8 Jan 2019 21:56:41 +0000
From: "Priest, Ione" <ipriest at msudenver.edu>
To: Access Technology Higher Education Network
<athen-list at u.washington.edu>
Subject: [Athen] Seeking opinions on captioning and foreign films
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Hello all,

We have a collection of courses that involve foreign films. In general, they have audio in a foreign language (everything from Chinese to German) with English subtitles burned into the film. There has also been a case of a silent film with intertitles written in the foreign language, again with English subtitles. Our English department (where these courses are housed) have expressed that the purpose of these films is to simply expose students to the "foreign" aspect, and that they want students to hear the foreign language as it is spoken for the emphases that cannot otherwise be captured. There is no requirement on any cinematography or other technical aspects of the films. They are trying to be proactive and ensure that these films are accessible at any point for any student, but they really don't have any solid ideas on how to accomplish this. All of our captioning is processed through our IT department, who previously provided an idea including providing 3 different copi!

es of each film - one with English audio and English captions, one with the foreign language audio and foreign captions, and the original. I should also add that we do not currently have any students for whom this would be an accommodation as far as I am aware.

We've engaged with both departments to work out some pieces of the puzzle, but I would love to hear how each of you might approach such a scenario or any other thoughts and opinions you have.

Thank you all,

Ione Priest, CPACC
Pronouns: she, her, hers
Accessibility Technology Manager
Access Center
Plaza 122
Metropolitan State University of Denver
ipriest at msudenver.edu
Phone: 303-615-0200
Fax: 720-778-5662
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