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Closed Captioning Matters: An Examination of the Use of Captioning for All Students Lyman Dukes III Casey Frechette University of South Florida St. Petersburg.

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Presentation on theme: "Closed Captioning Matters: An Examination of the Use of Captioning for All Students Lyman Dukes III Casey Frechette University of South Florida St. Petersburg."— Presentation transcript:

1 Closed Captioning Matters: An Examination of the Use of Captioning for All Students Lyman Dukes III Casey Frechette University of South Florida St. Petersburg

2 Session Objectives Discuss Legislation Impacting Captioning Discuss Literature on Captioning Discuss One Institution’s Experience with Captioning Discuss Your Experiences with Captioning Discuss Conclusions and Next Steps

3 Project Background Students are selecting online courses If given a choice, which course type would you rather take? Face-to-face 32% Hybrid 27% Online 41% I would like to see more online courses available at USFSP. Yes, definitely 68% Neutral 29% No, we seem to have enough 3%

4 Project Background Online course offerings are on the increase Captioning is provided per accommodation request Court rulings appear to indicate otherwise The institution’s Accessibility Committee initiated a pilot study to examine the cost and benefit of captioning all online course video content

5 Goals of the Study Do students use captions, if included in online course video content? If students use captioning, do students indicate benefit from the use of captions included in online course video content? If benefit is noted, what benefits do students report? Is there benefit for other campus constituents? What are the typical costs for captioning online course video content?

6 Legislation says Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, requires that electronic and information technologies are accessible to persons with disabilities if procured, developed, maintained, or used by federal agencies. (Burgstahler, 2002)

7 Legislation says Title II of the ADA requires that communications with persons with disabilities must be as effective as communications with others. – The OCR indicated ‘as effective as’ includes: Timeliness of delivery Accuracy of the translation Provision of content in a manner and medium appropriate to the message significance and ability of the individual (OCR, 2003)

8 Legislation says The DOJ takes the position that the ADA applies to online communication. – The DOJ stated: “Covered entities under the ADA are required to provide effective communication regardless of whether they generally communicate through print media, audio media, or computerized media such as the Internet. Covered entities that use the Internet for communications regarding their programs, goods, or services must be prepared to offer those communications through accessible means as well.” (Patrick, 1996)

9 Office of Civil Rights says “The courts have held that a public entity violates its obligations under the ADA when it only responds on an ad-hoc basis to individual requests for accommodation” (Distance Education Accessibility Guidelines Task Force, 2011, p. 9)

10 In sum Access does not equal compliance, but effectiveness of the access – timeliness, accuracy, and appropriateness – must be addressed. (Carnevale, 1999)

11 Court Rulings say A recent ruling impacting several California institutions has been interpreted to mean all audio and video content must be captioned prior to being made available.

12 Court Rulings say Other charges relative to online course accessibility have been brought against: – Northwestern University – New York University – Penn State University – Louisiana Tech University – Florida State University

13 Our Position, not necessarily the position of the Institution It’s the most ethical approach – A course experience should be the same for students with or without a disability Universal Design approaches should be applied whenever reasonable and appropriate Improving access may improve student success and retention rate We are legally obliged

14 The Evolution of Captioning 1972 – Open captioning was used in TV programming for the first time in the U.S. 1976 – FCC approved closed captioning Captioning is now commonplace in the TV environment Literature on distance education often addresses ‘access’ however, often not in terms of persons with disabilities Distance education faces a journey similar to that of captioning for TV (Carroll & McLaughlin, 2005)

15 The Evolution of Distance Learning Correspondence Courses Televised Courses E-mail driven online courses Web-based online courses (Burgstahler, 2002)

16 Literature Says For Students Diagnosed – Students with hearing impairments most often report issues with the inaccessibility of audio/video material (Fichten et al., 2009) Students with disabilities face a ‘second digital divide’ (Burgstahler, 2002) Visual text alternatives for audio information and complex sentence structures are barriers (Lang & Steely, 2003)

17 Literature Says For Students not Diagnosed – ‘Provides an additional level of comprehensive input when learning a new language’ – ‘Yielded more positive attitudes and improved vocabulary’ – ‘Improved vocabulary, reading comprehension, word analysis skills, and increased motivation in a remedial reading course’

18 Literature Says For Students not Diagnosed – Students in a foreign language course indicated they used captions to: Increase attention Improve language processing Reinforce previous knowledge Analyze the language – Students in Science ‘Low performers’ used captions to achieve scores similar to ‘high-performers’

19 Method Research Setting – USFSP is part of the USF system and has approximately 6,500 full- and part-time students – We are an urban campus in downtown St. Petersburg – In typical semesters approximately 25% of our SCH is generated thru online courses


21 Method Courses: Law and Business I / Introduction to Psychology Module content: Full Length Lecture Capture Method – Instructor and any presentation visual on screen Module Lecture Length: – Law and Business I – 99 minutes – Introduction to Psychology – 108 minutes Setting: Lectures filmed in distance learning studio with a live audience of 32 students in each course

22 Method All videos delivered via VideoJS, an open- source HTML5 video player Advantages – Place captions below videos – Customize font for maximum readability – Provide option to turn captions off – Provide other playback controls – Option to track student interactions with controls

23 Method

24 Captions were enabled by default Captions could be copied and pasted Videos appeared at a size of 720x440 but could be made full screen

25 Method


27 Instruments 12-item survey administered at the end of the semester – Perceived extent of caption usage – Attitudes toward captioning – Other experiences with closed captioning – Disability status

28 Quantitative Analysis Categorical data were tabulated and descriptive statistics were calculated – Portion of students with self-identified disabilities – Perceived helpfulness of captions – Perceived extent of caption usage

29 Qualitative Analysis Open-ended responses to how captions helped or hurt were coded using the Glaser- Strauss constant comparison method (1967) – 56 responses, from three to 63 words in length – Comments were categorized by comparing remarks to existing “good fits” – Properties that defined categories were identified to turn “collections” into “constructs” (Lindlof, 1995)

30 Discussion



33 Student Benefit Clarification Students sometimes had difficulty hearing the instructor. – “Closed captions helped me because I was able to read and process what was being said a little easer.” – “I used it in case I missed something the instructor said, I could pause and still see what was said.” – “I was able to see exactly what the professor was saying …”

34 Discussion Student Benefit Comprehension Students treated captions as a core delivery method, not just a supplement to the audio content – “They made the information easier to learn because I am more of a visual learner” – “The closed captions helped me when viewing the videos at home, because I have small children and at times they can be loud.” – “The closed captions helped me because it’s not my first language.”

35 Discussion Student Benefit Spelling of Keywords Students appreciated seeing the spelling of unfamiliar words – “If the professor said a word I didn’t understand I’d go back and read the caption.” – “There were many legal terms that I did not know of and the captions helped me learn how to spell them.” – “It helped me spell certain words that were important in the lecture.”

36 Discussion Student Benefit Note Taking Students reported using captions as a note taking tool – “They helped because when I was taking notes I was able to pause the video and use the captions rather than rewind and repeat the video.” – “It was extremely helpful and I took tons of notes.” – “I could pause and just copy the caption.”

37 Discussion Student Benefit Other Potential Benefits … but don’t quote us! Business Law I – Student course grades with closed captioning were slightly higher than without Introduction to Psychology – Student course grades with closed captioning were more than 7% higher than without

38 Discussion Student Hindrance – Three students reported seeing words that ran together without spaces – Two additional students cited accuracy issues with the captions

39 Discussion Faculty Benefit – Law and Business I – Student evaluations ratings increased in 8 of 8 categories – Introduction to Psychology – Student evaluation ratings increased in 6 of 8 categories

40 Discussion Faculty Benefit – One of the instructors stated “I was thrilled to be able to offer the on/off captioning option to my students. I really liked that the students could turn off the captioning option if they found it distracting. I have had several students tell me that they like the closed-captioning feature.”

41 Discussion Institutional Benefit – Improved course satisfaction among students – Improved student success – Improved retention rates

42 Discussion Cost Analysis – $150 per hour for transcription / provision of caption and transcript files Other vendors had similar rates

43 Discussion Other Options – Speech-to-Text Software Examples – Dragon Naturally Speaking – Camtasia speech-to-text capability – Captionist Position Approximately $42,000 per year / $20 per hour

44 Conclusions Educate Administrators Educate and Train Professors Educate and Train Students Develop and Adopt e-learning / accessibility Guidelines Convene a campus accessibility committee Further Research

45 Please share your experiences with captioning at your institution and ask any questions you may have.

46 References Burgstahler, S. (2002). Distance Learning: Universal Design, Universal Access. AACE Journal, 10(1), 32-61. Norfolk, VA: AACE. Carnevale, D. (1999, October 29). Colleges strive to give disabled students access to on-line courses. Chronicle of Higher Education, 46(10), Retrieved May 22, 2014, from Give/13474 Give/13474 Carrol, J., McLaughlin, K. (2005). Closed captioning in distance education, Journal of Computing Sciences in Colleges, Vol. 20, Issue 4, 183 – 189. Distance Education Accessibility Guidelines Task Force. California Community Colleges, (2011). Distance education accessibility guidelines for students with disabilities. Retrieved from website: ty_Guidelines_2011.pdf ty_Guidelines_2011.pdf Fichten, C.S., Ferraro, V., Asuncion, J.V., Chwojka, C., Barile, M., Nguyen, M.N., Klomp, R. & Wolforth, J. (2009). Disabilities and e-Learning Problems and Solutions: An Exploratory Study. Educational Technology & Society, 12(4), 241- 256.

47 References Glaser, B. G., & Strauss, A. L. (1967). The discovery of grounded theory: Strategies for qualitative research. Chicago: Aldine. Lang, H.G. & Steely, D. (2003). Web-Based Science Instruction for Deaf Students: What Research Says to the Teacher. Instructional Science: An International Journal of the Learning Sciences, 31(4), 277. Lindof, T. R. (). Qualitative communication research methods. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. Patrick, D. US Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division. Letter of September 9, 1996 addressed to to senator tom harkin of iowa. Retrieved from website: da_tal/tal712.txt

48 Thank you very much for sharing your time with us.

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