Per Section 508 of the Americans with Disabilities Act and Quality Matters best practices for instruction, faculty who provide instructional videos to students must provide them with closed captions or text transcripts of the video’s content.
What are Closed Captions and Transcripts?
Closed captions are synced text subtitles that represent all speech and sounds occurring in the video; they can be turned on or off by the viewer. In comparison, a transcript is a text document that lists all speech and sounds occurring in the video.
Why is this Important?
Providing instructional video with closed captions or transcripts can support students of all abilities, the fundamental reason behind Universal Design for Learning. Closed captions and transcripts…
- Give students a better chance at perceiving and understanding information through multiple means of representation.
- Promote engagement with video by allowing students to choose how they will experience the video’s content. This can include optimizing access through assertive technology.
- Promote understanding across language barriers – transcripts can be translated!
- Support viewing in situated learning environments – a captioned video can be muted and viewed in sound-sensitive environments.
Sourcing Accessible Video
To help you evaluate an instructional video’s quality and accessibility for integration with classroom curriculum, use this rubric.
Instructors who create their own videos may host and caption them using their MATC YouTube accounts. For more information, see our First Time Guide to Using Youtube and the embedded video.
Instructors using videos that they did not create themselves may look for alternatives that provide closed captions and transcripts. Sources of accessible video at MATC include the following technologies.
- Blackboard’s NBC Learn Mashup – Directly accessible from within a course in Blackboard, the NBC Learn Mashup tool provides over 40,000 videos with closed-captions that can be integrated with learning activities. Send your syllabus or a list of topics to the NBC Learn Curriculum Team at firstname.lastname@example.org to receive a customized list of videos with descriptions to help you get started.
- Films on Demand – Through the MATC Library’s subscription to Films on Demand, faculty have access to over 6,000 high-quality digital videos that can be shared with students through links in Blackboard.