Video Captions

At ASU, all online videos must be captioned.  Captions are synchronized transcriptions of audio content, displayed as an additional track or burned into a video.

  1. Live streaming events
  2. Recorded videos
    1. Auto-generated captions
      1. Free online auto-captioning
      2. Paid online auto-captioning
      3. Software that can generate captions or transcripts
      4. Human transcription services
    2. ASU library-owned or -licensed videos
  3. Requests for accommodations
  4. How to write captions

1. Live streaming events

At ASU, live streaming videos at a minimum must have auto-captions. See how to enable:

If someone with a hearing impairment requests an accommodation at a live event, please see SAILS for help arranging these.

2. Recorded videos

At ASU, captions must be provided for all recorded videos consumed by students, staff, or the public in digital formats, such as on websites, presentations, social media and trainings.

Captions may be either professional human-generated transcripts (see SAILS for help arranging these) or edited auto-generated captions (see below).

Providing for and editing auto-generated captions

Because human transcription services can be expensive, many people choose to add free auto-generated captions, then edit them.

If you add auto-generated captions, you must edit them. Unedited auto-captions do not satisfy the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) or Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act. 

See the following for instructions for enabling and editing auto-captions on a number of platforms.

Free online auto-captioning services

Paid online auto-captioning services

Software for auto-generating captions

  • Camtasia: Manually add captions or use the integrated Microsoft speech-to-text engine to add auto-generated captions in Camtasia.
  • Windows Speech Recognition: Use this free speech recognition software built into Windows to generate a transcript.
  • Google Docs Voice Typing: Use this free "voice typing" software in Google docs (available in the Chrome browser only) to generate a transcript.

Paid transcription services

If you don't have the time or resources to edit auto-captions or create captions for a recorded video, there are many paid human transcription services available. In some cases, it may make sense to take advantage of a paid service to edit auto-generated captions or to transcribe a recorded video.

ASU Library-owned or -licensed videos

If you'd like to use a library-owned or -licensed video in class or on Canvas that is not yet captioned, add it to your ASU Library Resource Organizer in Canvas, and the library will automatically caption it. Or you can submit a Streaming Video Reserve request form, and the library will activate the tool in Canvas and add the item for you.

See more information about library streaming videos.

3. Requests for accommodation

If a request for an accommodation is made, provide Communication Access Realtime Translation (CART) captioning or American Sign Language (ASL).

4. How to write captions

The recommended guide to writing captions is the Department of Education-supported Described and Captioned Media Program (DCMP) Captioning Key. The BBC's Subtitle Guidelines is also good.

Relevant W3C WAI documents



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