This is an internal University of Denver document created to help faculty and staff members add video captions or to obtain text transcripts from audio files. The following are some media systems and instructions on how to process them. By law, the University must accommodate students that have officially requested course materials to be accessible. In general, designing all course materials to be accessible by all people is best practice.

Does DU have a 3rd party captions/transcript provider?
Yes, the two most popular companies are 3PlayMedia and Rev.  These are not a free service, various DU departments have their own account. If a student with special needs requires captions or transcripts, Disability Services Program (DSP) will pay for services.

The following information provides you with instructions on how to add or request captions depending on the technology you are using.


DU CourseMedia film with English Subtitles

IF the video is an existing DU CourseMedia (DUCM) video and IF the DVD has subtitles, THEN:

  • Contact library reserve to request a subtitles version of video.
  • New caption version will get posted to DUCM as “film name – English subtitles”.
  • The library will contact the instructor about the new caption version.
  • Instructor will add caption version into their DUCM gallery or to directly Canvas as a single video.
  • Instructor will notify students about caption version.
  • NOTE: Subtitles are part of the video file, they can not be turned off or on like closed captions.

IF the video is an existing DUCM video and IF DVD or VHS does not have captions, THEN:

  • OTL or Library Reserve will download existing video file(s) from our web server.
  • OTL, Library Reserve or Disability Services Program (DSP) can submit video(s) to 3PlayMedia or Rev for a caption file. Turnaround time is 1-4 four working days.
  • Our DU 3PlayMedia account has three sub-accounts.  If videos are for DSP, upload videos into the Disability Service Program account.
  • Once we are notified by 3PlayMedia or Rev, we login and download the .vtt file(s).
  • Each .vtt file(s) needs to be renamed to the exact file name of the video. For example: 98745_wind.mp4 -> 98745_wind.vtt
  • The .vtt  file(s) should be given to Mark, Alex or Joseph. They can move the caption files to the web media server folder.
  • Notify instructor that captions are available for their video(s).
  • The DU CourseMedia media player has a CC button to activate captions.

IF video was directly recorded or uploaded into Canvas, THEN:

IF video is an existing TechSmith Relay video, THEN:

IF making a new TechSmith Relay video, THEN:

  • Select the recording profile called “Captioning+FullAudioSearch”. If you do not see this option, please contact Alex M at the OTL. caption-relay-profile
  • After you submit your Relay recording, you will receive an email from Relay asking you to click the link to the video to edit your captions.  View these instructions on Relay captions.
  • After you have edited your captions, preview captions and publish your final recording.

IF using a YouTube video and IF you are not the video owner, THEN:

  • Turn on captions by clicking the CC button and review caption quality.
  • YouTube captions technology uses voice recognition that is free, but is not 100% accurate. If necessary, contact the video owner so they can edit their captions.
  • If you need to download your YouTube video, just add “ss” to the being of the YouTube video url. For example, and download the mp4 version.
  • Re-post YouTube video, edit captions and share video as a private unlisted video.
  • NOTE: Accessibility laws trumps copyright laws when providing students with special needs course materials. Learn more at

    Turn on captions and interactive transcript

IF video was created using TechSmith Camtasia Studio, THEN:

  • Use the caption editor tool provided by Camtasia Studio. Follow these instructions to add and edit captions.
  • You can import and export caption files via Camtasia Studio.
  • If the Camtasia Studio video is hosted on DU VideoManager, please send your caption files to Alex or Joseph at the OTL.
  • Captions files will be placed in a special folder called “captions” on our web server.
  • Click the CC button to activate captions on the video.
  • Note: Camtasia Studio only allows .SMI and .SRT caption file formats.

IF video is located on DU VideoManager, THEN:

  • Obtain the original video copy or download a copy form DU VideoManager by pressing the “Download Video” button.
  • Submit the video to our captioning vendors.
  • Provide .vtt file to Alex or Joseph at the OTL so that they can upload the caption file to our video server.
  • Captions will play on non-group videos via the HTML/JW Player.
  • Captions will not play on a private group Flash video player.

IF audio podcast is from National Public Radio (NPR), THEN:

IF audio podcast does not have a text transcript, THEN:

  • Record and save audio file.
  • A) Submit audio file (.wav, .mp3,) to our caption vendors.  You must specifically request that you want a written transcript. You will be notified via email once your transcript is created. Download the transcript in PDF, Plain Text or MS Word. caption-3playMedia-PlainText-Transcript
  • B) Convert your audio into a video presentation and upload it to YouTube. Once YouTube has processed your media file, use their caption editor tool to edit captions.  Download the .srt and remove the time codes.


IF using YouTube and IF you are the video owner, THEN:

  • Log into your YouTube account and click Creator Studio under your profile icon.
  • Not all YouTube videos can support captions. If your YouTube video does not have automatic captions, it could be due to one or more of the following reasons:
    • The language in the video is not yet supported by automatic captions.
    • The language is too technical.
    • The video is too long.
    • The video has poor sound quality or contains speech that YouTube doesn’t recognize.
    • There is a long period of silence at the beginning of the video.
    • There are multiple speakers whose speech overlaps.
  • If your YouTube does have automatic captions, please make sure to review and edit them if necessary.
  • Once your video is published, YouTube provides users with an interactive transcript that allows users to quickly read the captions.


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