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THE CHALLENGES OF TRANSCRIPTION IN HIGHER EDUCATION

by superuser on May 16, 2018

The use of video transcripts and captioning in education is highly effective as it enables all students to gain the most out of learning resources and materials.

Verbit's focus on educational institutions in the US has proven to be highly effective because the company’s proprietary technology has been fine-tuned to the address the specific needs of this field (like many others such as legal, medical, financial, etc.), in which accurate transcriptions and captions are critical for learning.

Before each semester begins, disability services aim for professionals to submit a set structure of the captions and provide transcripts available – however this has proven to be difficult and as a result rarely ever happens. More often than not, educators do not know in advance which videos will be shown before each lesson.

It can be said that educators lack some knowledge and have some general misconceptions on captioning and video transcribing – therefore fail to utilize the process to its full potential. Educators want to find a simpler and more effective method to decrease last minute preparations that will enable them to send through videos within a timely manner.

The standard workflow generally consists of the following:

  • Students submit captioning, interpreting, and transcription requests.Instructors are contacted before the term starts, as well as consistently throughout the semester, to compile lists of videos for captioning.
  • Accessibility aides search for existing transcripts or captioned versions of the video.
  • If no transcript exists, they will download the video (if online) or transfer DVD/VHS content to digital format, then upload the video to the media platform so all of their course videos are on one platform.
  • From Kaltura, a video hosting service, they submit the video to Verbit for captioning and transcription. Usually, this process takes 2-3 days but they can select same day service for last minute content.
  • Disability Services sends the instructor a link to the video while closed captioning is being processed, so they can include it in their presentation in advance.
  • Disability Services adds interactive transcripts to videos once captioning is completed.

Partnering with a company such as Verbit will be highly useful as it will simplify the process and leave educators feeling less like they are embarking on a burdensome task. Once educators have the video content, all they need to do is submit to Verbit before each class (even 5 minutes before) and the instructors will have a draft a couple of seconds after submissions with very high accuracy thanks to our AI speech technology that allows a 90% average accuracy rate. This will show educators that it is not a timely process and, as a result, they nearly always become more inclined to submit videos for captioning. After a couple of hours after the class has ended, the instructors will have their transcripts at 99% accuracy.

Prior to this, universities found the process of captioning videos in house challenging. This was due to the low number of staff available. Manually captioning each video on an average of at least five times a day has proved to be time consuming and virtually impossible among small teams with lesser staff. Imagine when we are speaking about universities with more than 10,000 minutes of media content to transcribe.

Using a third party service vendor such as Verbit has helped this university immensely, and in some ways, taught them about the advantages of closed captioning and video transcripts to ease their pain points. It has enabled them to structure their lessons accordingly and effectively; communicating and catering to the needs of sensory disabled students in their classes with speed and accuracy.

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