Do I really need to caption my videos?

Making sure videos have captions can be confusing and time consuming for those not familiar with available options. Disability Services (DS) can assist you. If you receive notice that a student in your course needs accommodations that include captions, contact us.

How does providing captions allow access to course materials?

  • The benefit of captions to students who are D/deaf may be obvious, but if you still have questions, feel free to watch this video on the A.I. blog.
  • Silence is golden. Captions are not only useful in noisy environments to increase comprehension. Forget to bring your earbuds and shouldn’t turn up the volume? No problem–turn on the captions.

 

What if videos in class only augment information from the readings or lecture rather than provide additional information for which students will be responsible? The Office of Civil Rights has defined accessible in multiple resolutions with institutions of higher education, as meaning that in any classroom or learning situation or activity:

“Accessible” means a person with a disability is afforded the opportunity to acquire the same information, engage in the same interactions, and enjoy the same services as a person without a disability in an equally effective and equally integrated manner, with substantially equivalent ease of use. A person with a disability must be able to obtain the information as fully, equally, and independently as a person without a disability. Although this might not result in identical ease of use compared to that of persons without disabilities, it still must ensure equal opportunity to the educational benefits and opportunities afforded by the technology and equal treatment in the use of such technology.” (Source: Resolution Agreement: Youngstown State University, OCR Docket No. 15-13-6002).

So now that I know I need to caption videos, what should I do? 

There are ways to manage captions regardless of the video host that is used, even if it is saved in your Google Drive.

https://support.google.com/drive/answer/1372218

Information about other platforms:

 

I still show VHS tapes in class. Can I caption videos on VHS? 

We may not have an immediate answer for this situation, but we are available to discuss how students might receive access to the information that is being shared. When updated digital technology is not available, there are still ways to provide access. Contact us. 

Social model of disability

Historically, disability has been defined and theorized using medical/psychological models, often without taking into account the actual experience of individuals with disabilities. The medical model assumes that the problem lies within the individual and, therefore, the individual must adapt to fit the environment. The social model of disability, however, focuses on removing societal barriers to ensure equal access and opportunities for choice and control. It’s not that simple, of course, but it is in stark contrast to the medical model 1.

To fully understand the social model of disability, it may be helpful to define some key terms:

  • Impairment is any abnormal or loss of function in the body or mind.
  • Functional limitation refers to a difficulty in completing tasks or activities.
  • Disability occurs when a functional limitation prevents an individual from carrying out an action, such as going to work or school.

 

Using these definitions, disability then becomes an experience between a person who has an impairment and the social environment. As an example, let’s think about this in terms of an individual who has paraplegia, or paralysis of the lower limbs of the body often the result of a spinal cord injury 2. Many people would say that paraplegia is the disability. But let’s rethink that a moment…

The impairment is the actual damage to the spinal cord, and the resulting functional limitations may include paralysis, or a loss of motor functioning. Disability, however, occurs when there is a negative interaction between the paralysis and the environment. Therefore, a paralyzed person who cannot use a stair entry into a building is disabled, but what if that person never encountered stair entries, only ramps or working elevators? Would we still consider that person disabled?

Please click on the video below to learn more about the social model of disability.

What are your thoughts? If you were to view disability through the social model of disability, rather than the medical model, how might it impact the way you:

  • Design your courses?
  • Administer an exam?
  • Make plans with friends?
  • Contribute to strategic or master plans?
  • Prepare for employment?

 

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4596173/?report=reader
  2. http://www.spinal-injury.net/paraplegia.htm