- Northern Essex Community College - http://www.necc.mass.edu -
Captioning–a visual representation of the audio portion of videotape material–enables deaf learners to have full access to materials used in the classroom. With an ever-expanding pool of captioning agencies providing a wider array of options, including modem technology, and because of the greater availability of other low-cost captioning alternatives, including non-video captioning such as C-Print™ and CART, access to classroom materials and lectures has become much easier. The purpose of this tipsheet is to familiarize educators with the variety of captioning formats available, provide information about services addressing the need for captioned material, and identify potential options for promoting access to video programming for deaf learners.
Closed captions (CC) are typically enclosed in black boxes and displayed on Line 21 of the TV set. These captions are invisible on the TV screen unless a decoding capability (a decoder or TV with decoder chip) is used.
Open captions can be “CC” captions recorded as “open” captions for visible display without the need for decoding, or they can appear as subtitles similar to those seen in foreign films and displayed with upper/lower case lettering and a drop shadow effect.
Online captioning is created using a stenographic keyboard that communicates with special software normally used with a laptop. These captions scroll up to three lines on the screen simultaneously with program presentation or airing, without script preparation. This process is called “real-time” captioning, which can be done, at sometimes very large distances, from program origination through modem technology. For example, some news captioning is prepared live by real-time captioners located hundreds of miles away from the news stations.
Offline captioning involves preparation of the captioning script for prerecorded programs, including caption formatting into appropriate lengths for display, language editing, caption placement, speaker identification, use of special fonts, and time coding. Offline captions are “encoded” onto a program master or “live displayed” during broadcast.
Many programs use verbatim, or word-for-word, caption-ing either because the captions must be prepared live or because of the philosophy of “full access” to the program.
Others incorporate caption editing strategies, such as simplifying complex language, to accommodate the reading and language levels of the primary audience, particularly K-12. This is important, because viewers have only one opportunity to view the captions.
This process is similar to real-time captioning except that it incorporates a combination of notebook computer and real-time captioning software to provide “video-less” captioning on either a computer monitor or a wall screen. It also is used in meetings and involves some language paraphrasing and two-way communication. For additional information, request a copy of the “CART Teacher Tipsheet.”
Real-time captioning is used for lectures, presentations, or live shows.
Offline rollup captioning is appropriate for prerecorded programs that are talk-oriented with little action, including documentaries, where generally one person speaks at a time.
Offline pop-up captioning is suitable for programs that consist of continuous, fast-paced dialogue among multiple speakers, requiring caption placement and formatting into one- to four-line captions.
Costs between real-time and offline captioning differ considerably. Real-time captioning generally costs $50 to $175 per hour of programming, while charges for offline captioning are given by the length of the program, usually about $15 per minute. Rollup captions are also cheaper to produce than pop-up captions. It is wise to compare costs and quality of captioning among providers.
Check the Federal Register for grant application notices of the Department of Education, Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services. The captioning grants information can be found under Chart 5, and can be accessed at this web link: http:/ocfo.ed.gov/grntinfo/forecast/forecast.htm#chart5.
Captions are an important aspect of the learning process for deaf and hard-of-hearing students and provide full access to the classroom experience. It is well worth the time and effort for educators to search for and provide quality captioning services to meet the needs of deaf and hard-of-hearing learners.
This PEPNet Tipsheet was compiled by Peter Schragle, Associate Professor and Senior Captioning Specialist, NTID, Rochester, New York.
If you have any further questions on this topic, about working with an individual who is deaf or hard of hearing, or would like more information, contact:
Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services
Article printed from Northern Essex Community College: http://www.necc.mass.edu
URL to article: http://www.necc.mass.edu/academics/support-services/learning-accommodations/deaf-and-hard-of-hearing-services/student-resources/accommodations-tipsheets/captioned-media/
Copyright © 2009 Northern Essex Community College. All rights reserved.