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Creating Accessible Multimedia

All students benefit from the introduction of universal design principles including captions and transcripts. Captions and transcripts should accompany audio and video used to deliver course content to meet the University’s legal requirement to provide equal educational opportunities for all. Please consider these as you create videos for your course:

  • Record only what is important and keep your videos appropriately short
  • As you plan your course, be aware of what costs are associated with captioning

To learn more, click on the buttons inside the tabbed menu.

Step-by-step instructions on how to create captions are provided in the following Canvas Guides:

Using Amara for Video Captioning

A tool to help you caption videos is Amara. Amara a free and easy-to-use video captioning and translation service. Captioning videos make them accessible for the hearing-impaired and improves the video’s search results. In addition to captioning video, you can also translate it into other languages.

The process includes:

  • Submit the URL of the video you want to capture or translate (Amara also works with many video sites such as YouTube, Vimeo, Blip.TV, USstream, and more)
  • Type subtitles as the video is playing
  • Sync the video with the subtitles
  • Use the embed code to share your captioned or translated video


If you use audio files without video, transcripts need to be made. Ideally, you can use the transcript you wrote before making the file. Insert the transcript near the audio file as a .doc, .rtf or .txt file for students to use. Otherwise, transcripts can be made by listening to your file.

  • You can send your audio file to a transcription agency
  • It takes about 5-6 hours per hour of audio to transcribe manually
  • You can also consider using Google Docs voice recording feature while you play the audio file

 Play the video to learn how to create an audio transcript from a voice recording in Google Docs.