NDC’s Creating Offline Captions summarizes the three main ways that institutions are ensuring media on campus is accessible by:
- Finding captioned media or comparable media: Searching for the same video that already captions or if a similar video that is captioned can be used.
- Captioning in-house: Utilizing staff or other personnel (i.e., student workers, interns, volunteers, etc.) along with specific technology necessary to add captions to various media.
- Outsourcing to a captioning vendor: Contracting with an outside captioning agency to add captions to media for them.
Often, campuses will use a combination of all three approaches. When considering whether to take on the task of captioning in-house, the labor and technology involved in each step of the captioning process must be factored into the overall investment. Initially, in-house captioning may seem more cost effective, but it is important to evaluate if current staff members can meet the demand or if additional support is needed. For example, according to 3PlayMedia, a captioning “rule of thumb” is that it takes 5-10 times the length of the video to caption it. The time required to caption a single video will still vary based on individual skills, length of video, type of video, and content.
|In-House Captioning||Outsource to Captioning Vendor|
- The Described and Captioned Media Program’s (DCMP) Captioning Key is a comprehensive guide on how to caption for individuals engaging in the captioning process. DCMP also created Caption it Yourself, an online guide for individual video creators who wish to caption their videos including instructions and techniques.
- National Center on Accessible Educational Materials offers a self-paced training module to learn how to caption videos.
- DeafTec has a list of DIY captioning tools that can help streamline the process, such as using automatic captions on popular platforms and editing them for accuracy.
- Join the NDC Listserv and ask colleagues for strategies on establishing in-house captioning services.
- The Described and Captioned Media Program (DCMP) houses a list of captioning vendors as well as a sample checklist to ask vendors about their captioning quality.
- 3PlayMedia has a white paper on How to Select the Right Closed Captioning Vendor: 10 Crucial Questions to Ask.
- Join the NDC Listserv and ask colleagues for captioning vendor referrals.