Kaltura media platform now includes automatic captioning

kaltura now offers auto-captioning spotlight

The Office of Information Technology (OIT) has recently implemented a process in the Kaltura media platform that automatically captions any new video uploaded using automatic speech recognition (ASR). These captions do not meet Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) accommodation requirements, but documentation has been created on how to improve the automatic captions to become ADA compliant.

Kaltura is a media management system used by instructors and students to upload and distribute video in Moodle and Canvas course sites. Now, when a video is uploaded, the ASR process begins immediately. No settings need to be enabled. Captions are created based on the audio track, and the content is assumed to be in English, however, video owners can re-run the ASR captions in other languages. Depending on video length, it can take a few hours until the captions are available to viewers.

While the ASR captioning process is a useful feature, users should only treat the captions as a first draft, as they only offer roughly 80% accuracy. However, there are further options that are available to improve these captions:

  1. The individual who uploaded the video or a co-editor can review and edit the automatically generated captions.

  2. The individual who uploaded the video can request professional captions, which will be performed by a human for a fee, which is charged back to their department.

  3. The individual who uploaded the video can upload their own captions to replace the automatically generated captions.

In addition, OIT has created a system that sends an email reminder overnight to individuals who have uploaded to Kaltura, reminding them of the above options.

This new process is important as the University is focusing on creating a more inclusive community by making accessibility part of users’ day-to-day work. Offering more opportunities to begin the captioning process are key steps toward a more accessible University.

Captioning also helps increase the searchability and engagement of videos in course sites. When adding a video to the Kaltura Course Media Gallery in Moodle or Media Gallery in Canvas, viewers are able to search for keywords in the captions that will direct them to a specific video, or to a specific point within a video.

If you have questions regarding the Kaltura captioning process, please contact Technology Help. For questions about meeting disability requirements, please contact the Disability Resource Center.