Video Captioning

Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services (DHHS) provides accessible media services (post-production captioning and transcription) to students and departments on campus.

In accordance with federal law, all instructors are required to make all classroom materials available to students with disabilities at the same time that it is made available to all other students.

Important Information

  • For ADS students with a captioning accommodation, the cost of creating accessible media for course-related materials shown in the classroom or posted on ELMS is covered by ADS
  • For rates for accessible media services not covered by ADS, contact DHHS
  • DHHS processes materials for ADS students first and then we will work on non-ADS student material
  • Materials are completed on a first come, first serve basis; the earlier requests are submitted, the faster the turnaround
If you have any questions, please contact the Manager of DHHS, Cassandra Lytle at dhhs@umd.edu or (301) 314-7209

For information about Live Captioning and Remote Transcription Services, including for Webex or Zoom Meetings

Please refer to this article from DIT that discusses how DHHS can assist and options for contracting with a third party independently.

Captioning Services


Captioning Services for ADS Students

After you have registered for classes:

  • Send your finalized schedule to DHHS and DHHS will contact your instructors about captioning needs
  • NOTE: If students do not send their schedules to DHHS, the assumption will be that captioning is not needed for any classes that semester
  • Before the start of the semester, share your accommodation letter with your instructors
  • During the private meeting with your instructors to discuss how your accommodations will be implemented, explain your accommodation for video captioning.
  • Ask your instructor if they will be utilizing any videos or podcasts during the semester or have plans to record their lecture via Panapto.

If your instructor is using videos during the semester:

  • Inform them that DHHS can assist with any captioning or transcription needs
  • Notify DHHS via email dhhs@umd.edu which of your courses will be using some type of media that may require captioning or transcription services

If your instructor is not using videos during the semester:

Thank them and ask them to contact you if that changes so you can be sure the videos are captioned.

Captioning Services for Faculty, TAs, and Staff

In accordance with federal law, all instructors (as agents of the University) are required to make all classroom materials available to students with disabilities at the same time that it is made available to all other students.

  • All videos and/or clips that you plan to show during the semester must be checked by you for closed captioning
  • YouTube’s automatic captions do not meet ADA requirements and are not considered accessible media

In the event that any videos (to be viewed in class or assigned outside of class) are scheduled to be shown, please follow these instructions:

Check to ensure your videos are captioned.

A YouTube video may not have captions (or the captions may not be accessible), however, a captioned version of the same video may exist elsewhere (i.e. the original website where the video first appeared, Vimeo, etc.). Please check other sources/websites to see if a captioned version is available

If your video is not captioned, select one of the following options:

Requesting Captioned Media through DHHS

DHHS handles caption requests for video links (i.e. YouTube videos*, video clips on websites, etc.).

In order to process caption requests quickly and efficiently:

  • Instructors should review their captioning needs as soon as they are made aware of the need to create accessible media
  • Caption requests should be submitted with as much advance notice possible to ensure accessible media is completed by the time it’s needed in class

The current turnaround time to complete caption requests is approximately five business days. Caption requests are processed on a first come, first serve basis and should be submitted to DHHS as soon as possible.

If a captioned video is needed before the five business day turnaround, please contact Cassandra Lytle at dhhs@umd.edu or (301) 314-7209 to discuss available options.

Captioned media is returned as an MP4 file through UMD Box.

*Note about YouTube Videos*
  • If you have videos that are hosted on your own YouTube channel, DHHS can connect you with a vendor who can create and upload captions directly to your account. Please contact DHHS for additional information about this option
  • If you have MP4s not yet uploaded to YouTube, requesting captions through DIT is much faster than connecting your YouTube account with an outside vendor as mentioned above

Requesting Captioned Media through DIT

DIT handles caption requests for all MP4 files, including Panopto class recordings. In order for DIT to caption your videos:

  1. Upload your videos (class recordings and/or MP4s) to the Panopto Recordings folder on Canvas
  2. Complete the DIT Caption Request Form

The Caption Request Form can be accessed here: Request Professional Captioning for Panopto Videos. Please note:

  • The link to the caption form is at the top of the article
  • Sign in through CAS with your UMD credentials to access the form
  • If you have multiple recordings ready to be captioned, you can include up to 20 files on a single request form
  • If you are recording as you go (i.e. weekly class lectures), a new request form needs to be submitted to DIT for each video/recording that is uploaded to the Panopto Recordings folder

For additional questions, please contact DIT at itaccessibility@umd.edu.

Requesting Captioned Media through Library Media Services

Library Media Services (formerly Hornbake Library) handles caption requests for DVDs and streaming videos.

To request captioned videos for streaming on your ELMS course site:

  1. Complete ELMS Course Reserves Streaming Request Form
  2. At the bottom of the form, in the “Comments or Special Instructions” box, please indicate that the video requires closed captions

Note: The Library Streaming Reserves module must be enabled in your ELMS course site before submitting a request. If you have questions, please refer to Library Media Services’ tutorial.

For additional questions, please contact Library Media Services at askmckres@umd.edu.

Captioning Services for Campus Departments

For a fee, DHHS is able to caption videos for campus departments that require accessible media.

To discuss your captioning needs and for additional information, including current rates and turnaround times, please contact Cassandra Lytle at dhhs@umd.edu or (301) 314-7209.

Captioning Services for the Public

For a fee, DHHS is able to caption videos for campus departments that require accessible media.

To discuss your captioning needs and for additional information, including current rates and turnaround times, please contact Cassandra Lytle at dhhs@umd.edu or (301) 314-7209.