Captioning Tips

Accessibility Laws

The University of Montana requires all websites to comply with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines, as well as:

  • Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act
  • The Americans With Disabilities Act
  • Montana Code Annotated section 18-5-601. 

This means that all content on University websites must be accessible to all persons with disabilities, including videos.

Captioning Videos for Accessibility

To comply with accessibility laws, all videos must have text provided for all audio. This is most easily done by providing captions synchronized to the video. Video and audio recordings produced for public websites on the University of Montana domain should be captioned before being published. The following are steps to produce captions.

  1. Create a transcript before recording
  2. Use YouTube Help to synchronize the captions to the video
  3. Publish the video to YouTube

Create the transcript before recording

SAIT suggests writing a script to the video before it is recorded. While this can be an approximation of what is going to be said, it makes creating captions far easier. If a transcript is not written, or not followed, when recording the video, captions will have to be written while watching the video (this involves much play/pausing while writing, and can be time-consuming).

Synchronize the captions to the video

SAIT recommends using YouTube Help to sync captions to the video. 

  1. Log in using the YouTube account the video will be published to. This will populate the "My Videos" list.
  2. Select the video you would like to caption
  3. Select "Edit."
  4. Select "Add Caption"
  5. Add the caption text (here is where you can copy/paste from the transcript, if it is accurate).
  6. Play the video to where you want your caption to end to sync the voice in the video to the caption.
  7. Select "Save Caption"
  8. Publish to YouTube when finished.

Publishing to YouTube

YouTube is the recommended service for publishing University videos because it supports Closed Captioning. Vimeo does not support captioning at this time.

For more assistance, please call x2002.