Should instructors be responsible for captioning their own videos and recorded lectures?

Instructors alone should not be required to caption media for coursework. Institutions as a whole are responsible for ensuring media is accessible, and the process can be labor intensive. Typically, this process is done by trained professionals/staff who are knowledgeable on captioning standards, such as including more than just spoken language, and knowing how to add captions in different video players. Consider the following strategies when addressing captioned media:

Establish a centralized process where media can be sent to be captioned in house or through a third-party captioning vendor. Use a combination of approaches based on turnaround and staff capacity.

For in-house captioning, use tools to make the process more streamlined (See “How can I create transcripts for captioning media from auto-captions?”). Ask instructors to provide a list of proper nouns and specific jargon/terminology used in the video for quality and accuracy purposes.

Prioritize captioning media when an accommodation request has been explicitly made (e.g., a deaf student enrolled in a course) as well as publicly-accessible materials (e.g., videos on the institution’s website and social media platforms). Captioning everything is encouraged.

Encourage instructors to find existing captioned media available on major streaming platforms (e.g. Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, etc.) or from the Described and Captioned Media Program’s library.

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Updated on July 28, 2022

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