ASL Interpreter helping a student and professor communicate in class
Professor presenting a slideshow to his class
Guest speaker, Ken Petry, speaks at a past Access MU symposium to a large audience
The varsity hockey team glides across the ice with members of the Best Buddies Choir


When using videos in your course, captioning can be useful for not only those students with disabilities but also those who speak English as a second language, non-traditional students taking courses, etc. Please note, if not needed for an accommodation, department will be responsible for costs to caption. For more information please contact

What is captioning?

Captions are text of spoken words time-synchronized with video. Captions allow viewers who cannot hear to see the words. Some students use captions to learn by reading together with listening. Captions should include relevant sound effects, identify the speaker, and describe other non-speech elements/activities (i.e. people dancing).

Captions vs. transcripts

Transcript is not synchronized with the media while captions are time-coded and displayed at the right time in a video.

Captions vs. subtitles

Captions used when the viewer cannot hear. Subtitles are used when a viewer can hear but does understand the language.

Closed vs. open captions

Closed captions can be turned on and off. Open captions are part of the video and cannot be turned off.

Benefits of captioning

  • Accessibility.
  • Better comprehension.
  • Video content search.