Video Captioning Conundrum

Captioning instructional videos can be a time-consuming process.  But it doesn’t have to be! Here are a couple of “What if…” scenarios with some solutions to help you create an inclusive learning environment.

What if I…need a YouTube video captioned that is not mine?

  1. First try contacting the author who posted the video via the Comment section in YouTube. (Note: You may not receive an answer quickly or none at all, but being able to edit the existing captions would be the path of least resistance! Also – we know the link below is non-descriptive, unfortunately YouTube captions do not allow us to hyperlink. Also, make sure the link below if updated and working before using as YouTube may update their resources.) You may want to adapt this template: “Hi, thanks for posting this video! I’ve been using this in my ____ class, and for educational purposes, we’d like to provide captions to create an inclusive environment for all students. Do you have a captioned version of this video? If not, may my institution caption this video? To help our students out, you can easily turn on community-captioning contributions:  Thank you and hope to hear back soon!”
  2. Use Amara to caption the videos.

What if I…need a video captioned that I created?

  1. If the course is part of the California Community College system, faculty-created videos used for instructional purposes can be uploaded to 3C Media Solutions to be captioned for free! All you need to do is create a free account to get started.
  2. Is the video short, and are you feeling proactive? YouTube has a couple of features that can help:
    • Have YouTube auto-generate captions to get you started. However, you must check captions for accuracy, and add in punctuation. Click here to learn how to edit auto-generated captions in YouTube.
    • Have a script of your video? You can copy and paste your script into the caption editor in YouTube, and YouTube will time-sync your words to your video in the form of closed-captions. 
  3. Amara offers a crowd-sourced solution that you may use to create captions and a transcript.

Hopefully these solutions can help you as you curate new (or have existing) instructional videos that need captioning. What are some other resources or strategies you use to help you caption your videos? Please let share your experiences and resources! We’re interested to learn how you caption your videos!

Posted in Articles, Course Design Showcase, Rubric Section D.

Canvas Course Designer for @One powered by OEI. Focused on the student experience, and interested in implementing new technology in the classroom. Other occupation: a forever student.

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