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Creating accessible video and audio content

The advice below is general advice for video and audio content. For specific advice on the regulatory requirements for video and audio used in teaching, see Video and audio accessibility for teaching.

Video and audio content are a great way to deliver learning content. However, when creating audio and video, you should keep in mind that:

  • Not everyone is able to see video.
  • Not everyone is able to hear audio.
  • Not everyone is able to operate a mouse.
  • Not everyone is a native language speaker.

Creating accessible multimedia content will make your content accessible to the widest possible audience.

Transcripts and subtitles

At minimum, video and audio content should be accompanied by an equivalent text alternative. The alternative should provide the viewer with the same information as they would have received from watching the video or listening to the audio. This could include:

  • A text summary
  • A text transcript
  • Subtitles (captions)

Transcripts and subtitles should capture all the spoken audio, plus on-screen text and descriptions of key visual information that wouldn’t otherwise be accessible without seeing the video.

There are two approaches to creating a transcript or captioning a video:

  • Do it yourself. There are tools that can help to speed up the process.
  • Outsource. There are several companies that transcribe videos for a fee.

Audio description

Audio description is a separate audio track that describes what’s happening on screen. That may include describing body language, expressions and movements which helps to make the content clear through sound.

Tools for creating captions and transcripts

There are tools available to automatically generate a transcript or caption file. Please note, automated transcription is not 100% accurate. Captions and transcripts should be reviewed and corrected to ensure accuracy.

Once you have a transcript or closed captions file, you will need to upload it to your hosting and streaming platform.

Video and audio accessibility for teaching

Advice and guidance on the regulatory requirements for video and audio created for teaching and learning.