Captioning Responsibilities

With increasing reliance on technology to carry out our business and deliver information, from file creation to managing contracts, ensuring access by everyone, including individuals with disabilities, should be considered part of our jobs. See Accessibility Begins With You.

IT Accessibility Services is here to help by providing you resources to make your captioning efforts successful. Contact your respective unit for information about preferred captioning vendors and funding sources.

How can I start?

Starting today:

  • Identify all video and multimedia resources you are using;
  • Work within your unit to develop a plan for compliance; and
  • Document your progress.

Why is captioning required?

Why is captioning important?

The Office of Civil Rights provides a "functional definition of accessibility." According to the definition, students with disabilities must be provided the opportunity to—

  • acquire the same information;
  • engage in the same interactions; and
  • enjoy the same services as students without disabilities with “substantially equivalent ease of use.*

*United States Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights [OCR]. (2011). Frequently Asked Questions about the June 29, 2010 Dear Colleague Letter. Washington, DC.


Did you know?

  • In the United States, about 55 million people have a disability (src: 2010 U.S. Census).
  • About 1 in 5 Americans have some kind of disability (src: 2010 U.S. Census).
  • The percentage of people affected by disabilities is growing as our population ages.
  • Two popular, free screen readers are VoiceOver (Mac OS and iOS) and NVDA (Win).
  • Good accessibility practices can improve the search ranking of your website.
  • Form fields without labels can cause problems for some assistive technology users.
  • Low color contrast makes content difficult to see, especially for users with low vision.
  • Documents linked on a website need to be accessible too (e.g., PDF and Word files).
  • Audio content, like podcasts, need transcripts for deaf or hard of hearing users.
  • Online videos should be captioned for deaf or hard of hearing users.
  • Using HTML tags correctly is very important for accessibility.
  • Descriptive link text helps make a website more accessible. Avoid using "Click here" or "Read more."
  • A "screen reader" is an application that reads content aloud to a user.
  • There is no "alt tag" in HTML. "Alt" is an attribute used with the img tag.
  • HTML uses the alt attribute to provide a text description of an image.
  • Alt text should describe an image, if the purpose of the image is to convey information.
  • If an image is a link, the alt text for the image should explain where the link goes.
  • If an image is only being used for decoration, the alt text should be null (i.e., alt="").
  • If a table has headers, using header tags (<th>) will make the table more accessible.
  • An accessible website is one that can be navigated and understood by everyone.