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How to improve student engagement with video using captions and subtitles

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RevBlogEducationHow to improve student engagement with video using captions and subtitles

Captions and subtitles can improve student engagement with recorded video by improving accessibility for all viewers. Professors are always looking for new ways to engage with students during instruction. Today, education is increasingly paired with technology, and many accessibility benefits can come from that combination. In fact, students actually appreciate opportunities to consume course content with the flexibility this technology affords. Let’s dive into how that works!

In a recent study, 99% of all students said captions were helpful in class.

Technology Partners with Teaching

Even before virtual learning became widespread, distance learning was a staple in higher education. Nearly 80% of colleges and universities offered partial or fully online degrees in 2019. But these courses were not nearly as prevalent as those that exploded onto the scene in 2020. Indeed, Learning Management Systems (LMS) were the first step in enhancing higher education with technology. Before the pandemic, institutions primarily used LMS as notice boards without fully utilizing interactive capabilities.

Since the pandemic, 57% of students feel more positive about online learning, and 68% would like to see more technology used for in-person courses.

Technology isn’t a replacement for educators but rather a complementary tool. A recent study shows that adding video effectively always helps improve student engagement and learning. Additionally, students receive the greatest positive impact when videos supplement in-person instruction. As one of the most popular modern teaching tools, video has many uses. From live-streamed lecture classes to off-site recorded interviews and more, higher education is just getting started on the possibilities of video learning.

However, it’s important to remember: not all students learn the same, as we’ll cover in the next section.

Flexibility Supports Learning Styles

One of the main benefits of recorded video is that it gives students the flexibility to consume educational content on their terms. Students learn in many ways due to different abilities or personal circumstances. Now, consider the VARK model. It’s easy to see how video and accessibility accommodations support these learning style requirements.

Since many of the VARK methods are known to overlap in practice, the combination of the three methods can further reinforce educational concepts for students. As stated earlier, technology works best when supplementing instruction; consider the different ways students may learn from that instruction.

Satisfying multiple learning styles is the first step toward supporting students as fully as possible.

Accessibility Benefits All

Creating recorded video lectures allows students to consume content in their preferred manner. In the past, students with family or medical emergencies could request exemptions such as recorded lectures or notes to supplement in-class instruction. But with the pandemic, virtual classes became the norm. All students could experience the benefits of not only flexible video lectures but captions and subtitles, too. 

“The nice thing about online education is that it can actually escape geographical boundaries,” said Don Kilburn, the CEO of UMass Online.

Thrust into a new environment, many college students don’t ask for the help they may need. Yes, plenty of students with learning disabilities know to ask for accommodations. And having the requests for assistive services moved to a virtual system led to a reduced stigma in asking for help. But what about other students unaware of the potential benefits? When accessibility support underlies everyday teaching, all students can reap the benefits. Now that so many students have experienced–and even grown to enjoy–virtual instruction, accessibility technology can help them continue to learn in their preferred style.

Fortunately, adding captions and subtitles to recorded video content is easy.

Choose Rev for Captions and Subtitles

By working with a captions and subtitles provider, educators and their institutions can quickly—and cost-effectively—increase the accessibility of video content. Professors are subject matter experts in their fields. Similarly, Rev has a marketplace of 72,000+ human professionals trained to create captions and subtitles. Institutions can order a variety of services with industry-leading turnaround times. When accuracy is of the utmost importance, Rev’s Premium Service Captions aims to solve both challenges. Premium Service Captions are generated by the top 5% of Rev’s freelance marketplace and meet all major compliance standards.

From 45-minute lectures to documentaries, you can capture every word—and not just in English. Captions or global subtitles from Rev make virtual learning easier for viewers who may be hearing impaired, non-English speakers, or have different learning styles.

Recorded video lectures are just one tool in broadening accessibility and access to learning. Accessibility accommodations can be beneficial to all students. By combining technology and adaptive teaching methods, as detailed above, accessible learning is closer than ever. It’s time to improve student engagement.

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