Accessibility guidelines for multimedia

Accessibility guidelines for multimedia

Official and Public Multimedia Content

Official multimedia content (video and/or audio, regardless if it is pre-recorded or streamed live over the internet) that represents the university's mission, as a whole (such as items used for marketing, news, or official communication), and are made available to the general public are considered official university content and must be captioned.

The streaming of large official live events (such as inaugurations, graduations, convocations, and commencements) must be captioned.  In addition, sign-language interpreters must be provided for audience members, and as-needed for the speakers/presenters. Other live events must be captioned, or sign-language interpreters must be provided, when requested by audience members/viewers, speakers/presenters, or other participants. Event coordinators must provide participants with the opportunity to indicate the need for captioning/sign-language interpretation on the invitation and during the advanced registration process for the event and be prepared to meet those requests at the time of the event. Wording similar to "If you need a sign language interpreter, closed captioning, or other accommodations please contact [the person responsible for the event] at [phone number] or [email address] at least two weeks before the event" may be used.

Publically available multimedia content that is not considered official content which represents the university's mission, as a whole (as defined above), should be captioned or have an accompanying transcript.  If it is not captioned, or transcribed, there must be accompanying text similar to "if you need this video in an alternate format please contact _____." Requests for alternate formats must be fulfilled within a reasonable amount of time, as defined above.

Non-public and/or known audience Multimedia Content

Non-public multimedia displayed, or provided, to a known and controlled audience does not have to have captions (or a transcript) unless requested as an accommodation.    

  • If the instructor is aware of an accommodation request at least 5 days in advance of the presentation/distribution of the multimedia, the captioned version must be provided at the same time that the multimedia is provided or shown to the class.  If providing the captioned version at the same time is problematic, instructors must not use the multimedia (however, they may choose to use alternate accessible materials, as appropriate).
  • If an accommodation request was not made in advance and a captioned version cannot be displayed at the time of planned screening, the captioned version must be provided within a reasonable amount of time (typically 2 business days) following the screening.
  • If an instructor distributes or assigns multimedia in the first week of a course, (or before a student can reasonably be expected to notify the instructor of an accommodation request), where the course is not a pilot or one-time offering, the multimedia must be captioned.
  • It is recommended when newly acquiring multimedia which will have repeated use that the captioned version be selected (if a captioned version is unavailable then it is recommended that a captioned version be generated at the time of acquisition.)

Captioning providers

The University has contracts with three providers who caption pre-recorded content and one vendor who captions live events.  Arrangements for captioning, along with pricing information, can be obtained by submitting a TUhelp ticket or emailing accessibility@temple.edu.

Before submitting a ticket to arrange for captioning of a given commercially produced multimedia item (e.g., a feature film or documentary) please consult with either of the two media services listed below as soon as possible, but at least 5 days before the intended screening, to determine if a captioned version of the multimedia, with appropriate licensing, is already available in tangible or streaming format. 

Video holdings of both the University Libraries and CLA Media Services are represented in the University Libraries online catalog at:  http://diamond.temple.edu/screens/videodvd.html

The university has several staff sign language interpreters and a contract with an interpreting agency.  Requests for interpreters can be directed to Disability Resources and Services.

Self Captioning

There are various applications that faculty and staff can use to caption their own content.  Below are a couple options to self caption your videos.