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A Guide for Captioning Video

Why is this important?

Captions are important because they help provide all individuals, including those with disabilities, access to video content in compliance with federal regulations, MSU policy, and best practices for video design. Captioning video content can increase comprehension of the material covered in the video, and can create greater visibility in search engines.

There are a number of benefits to hosting media content in MediaSpace, including free hosting, unlimited storage, and ease of integration with D2L. While these are important, another benefit to consider is the captioning services that can be accessed through MediaSpace.

All MSU faculty, staff, and students can order machine captions for media content hosted on MediaSpace. These captions are free and unlimited and usually take less than 30 minutes to generate. Captions can be edited and corrected in the MediaSpace built-in editor.

Machine Captions

Machine captions are free, unlimited, and can be ordered on all media content hosted in MediaSpace. MediaSpace will automatically generate captioning that is around 70-80% accurate, dependent upon the quality of the audio. With this in mind, it is recommended to check the accuracy of machine captions and correct any inaccuracies using the captions editor before making them available to viewers.

Ordering Captions

Alternatively, human-created captions are also available for MediaSpace content. This paid service costs as low as $1.25 per minute of captioned video, and requires little technical expertise and time to complete. These captions are guaranteed to be 99% accurate. In most cases, captions will be added to the video within 24-72 hours.

There are two ways to order human-created captions:

  1. Self-Service: Order captions for all of your media content hosted in MediaSpace using the Order MediaSpace Captions form. An account number is required to complete this order, and the captions will be added to your MediaSpace content automatically once they are complete.
  2. Request help with captioning: If you would like assistance in ordering captions for your media content, or have media hosted outside of MediaSpace, use the Captioning Request Form. An account number is required to complete this order, and there is no guarantee that captions can be created for content hosted outside of MediaSpace (e.g., YouTube, Vimeo, etc.). You will not be billed for content that cannot be captioned.

There are also ways of creating your own captions using software and services that you already use. For more information, visit the tutorial on creating your own captions.

Beyond Captions

Captions are only the first step in digital accessibility compliance. Altogether there are nine specific audio/video accessibility guidelines. To get started looking at them see: