[Athen] Support for Video Captioning Tools and Services
National Deaf Center
help at nationaldeafcenter.org
Fri Sep 27 09:00:42 PDT 2019
We saw your post about captioning media for online courses and would like
to contribute information to the discussion. As you can see from
colleagues, funding structures and coordination efforts for making online
course content accessible will vary by institution. Often this variance is
based on the policies and procedures for captioning media used for campus
purposes. While the institution as a whole is responsible for making online
courses accessible, the responsibility or resources do not necessarily need
to fall on one department. We would like to share some information about
funding structures for captioning media as well as additional resources
that may be helpful for future reference.
To help provide a general overview of how institutions are addressing
captioning media funding, we would like to share the following information
derived from 3PlayMedia’s 2017 State of Captioning
(1) report. This report is based on a survey taken by over 1,400 people
across a variety of industries. Individuals from higher education
institutions accounted for roughly 65% of all respondents. The report
offers the following information on coordinating captioned media efforts
36% of organizations take a proactive stance to captioning, saying they
caption all their video content.
79% of organizations have a budget allocated specifically for captioning.
61% of organizations already have or are in the process of developing a
centralized captioning process.
Captioning Budget: The average captioning budget in higher education
institutions was $1-$10,000 but some reached as high as $50,000+. This
will all depend on the needs of the university, policies on whether the
university captions all video content, and population of students with
disabilities requesting captioning for media in the classroom. (p. 11)
Departments that were most frequently cited as responsible for
captioning (across multiple industries) were Instructional
Technology/Design, Disability Services or Compliance Office, and Video
Production. (p. 13)
84% of organizations had 1 to 5 personnel involved with captioning
across all industries.
Having campus wide policies and procedures for captioned media needs is
recommended to help determine a consistent and streamlined process to work
for your campus. A collaborative effort among the disability support
services office, IT, library, faculty, and other relevant departments is
often the most effective approach. NDC’s Creating Offline Captions
<http://www.nationaldeafcenter.org/offlinecaptions> (2) resource summarizes
the three main ways that institutions are ensuring media on campus is
accessible by creating captions in-house, outsourcing to a third
party, or finding
comparable media that is already captioned. Often campuses will use a
combination of the three by first trying to find an existing version that
is already captioned and then making a determination whether to use their
in-house program (if available) or outsource based on factors such as
turnaround time needed.
If online courses include media created by professors, such as voice-over
powerpoints, videos, or podcasts, a process can be established for how to
address requests for uncaptioned materials. If the institution does not
have the capacity to produce captions in-house (i.e. proper software,
dedicated and trained staff to provide captions, etc.) then outsourcing to
a third party could be an alternative option. As a federally funded program
we do not endorse or recommend specific captioning vendors; however, we
have found a comprehensive list of vendors to contact provided by the Described
and Captioned Media Program <http://www.dcmp.org> at
Campus-wide captioning policies enforced and supported by administration
can assist in defining how these services are funded and coordinated.
Potential topics to incorporate into a policy may include:
Funding Structure: Either centralized or decentralized for campus-wide
captioning needs. As an example for decentralized funding: academic
accommodations may be viewed as paid for by the DSS office budget while all
other requests would be covered by each individual department. A
centralized structure would consist of a designated captioning fund that is
shared by all departments for all campus captioned media needs.
Request Procedure: Requests can be made to a designated captioning
“center” on campus or a captioning vendor that is contracted with the
campus. Some universities use the disability services office as a central
office for captioning requests and production. On the other hand, a
university may require each department to use a specific contracted vendor
when captioning services are needed. Timelines for turnaround should also
be included with the request procedure.
Purchasing Media: Guidelines can be outlined for departments to purchase
accessible copies of media such as DVDs that are already captioned.
Course Materials: Institutions who are using media shown during class,
assigned as homework, or provided as recommended supplemental resources
should be made accessible even if the original video or production company
did not add captions. Additionally, any required course materials, such as
books with online interactive components, should be vetted to ensure that
audio and visual content are accessible for all students.
Instructors Producing Pre-Recorded Lectures: When instructors create
pre-recorded lectures, having the instructor (who is most knowledgeable
about the specific vocabulary and jargon) create transcripts to be
converted into on-screen captions is a helpful technique to reduce the time
and labor costs for captioning these videos.
Campus-Produced Media: Campuses that create videos for marketing,
orientations, and other kinds of video media could also be considered as
part of the campus-wide captioning needs.
If you would like additional guidance on developing campus policies and
procedures for captioning media, please do feel free to contact us directly
at help at nationaldeafcenter.org. We can also supply samples from other
We hope you find the above information helpful in your planning process. We
also offer a listserv and newsletter if interested:
www.nationaldeafcenter.org/signup. Shortly, you will receive a survey
asking for feedback on the interactions and support provided by the NDC.
Your feedback is appreciated and will be used to improve our services. Have
a great day!
Why Captions Provide Equal Access, nationaldeafcenter.org/captionaccess
Equitable Access Guide: Understanding Legal Responsibilities for
Video from the University of Washington’s DO-IT Center that discusses
captioning for university-wide constituencies:
“ACCESS: Post Production/Offline Captioning” Module from the Described
and Captioned Media Program (DCMP),
DCMP Captioning Key, http://www.captioningkey.org/quality_captioning.html
Gernsbacher, M. A. (2015). Video captions benefit everyone. Policy
Insights from the Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 2 (1), pp. 195–202.
Retrieved from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5214590/
Enamorado, Sofia. (2019). How to Centralize Video Accessibility Efforts
at Your Organization. Retrieved from
3Play Media: State of Captioning: 2017 Report:
Creating Offline Captions: nationaldeafcenter.org/offlinecaptions
* NDC | help*
Savio Chan, Lore Kinast,
Dave Litman, & Stephanie Zito
*help at nationaldeafcenter.org <help at nationaldeafcenter.org>*
NDC is a technical assistance and dissemination center jointly funded by
the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Special Education Programs
(OSEP) and the Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA)
the contents of this email do not necessarily represent the policies of the
On Tue, Sep 24, 2019 at 3:31 PM Jennifer Knott <
knott_jennifer at columbusstate.edu> wrote:
> Greetings All:
> I am posting a question regarding captioning tools and services. At your
> institution, who normally provides financial support for tools or services
> involved in making online course videos accessible? Are there multiple
> departments that combine their resources, considering so many benefit from
> supporting students and improving outcomes?
> Looking forward to hearing from you,
> Jennifer Knott
> Jennifer Knott, Ed.D.
> Director, Center of Online Learning
> Columbus State University
> (706) 507-8695
> athen-list mailing list
> athen-list at mailman12.u.washington.edu
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