Panopto Closed Captioning and ADA Section 508 Compliance

In 2020, the University adopted the Electronic and Information Technology Accessibility Policy and Procedure (EIT) as part of its commitment to providing improved digital accessibility. Under EIT guidelines for accessibility, video recordings must contain captions that are 99% accurate to satisfy ADA Section 508 compliance. The Lecture Capture (Panopto) service adopted by the University provides two different options for generating closed captions:

  • Machine-generated captions, often referred to as Automated Speech Recognition (ASR), are generated by a speech-to-text engine that “listens” to the audio track and produce a set of captions when uploading a new video to Panopto. Accuracy of these captions varies — requiring manually editing to bring them up to 100% accuracy — and is further reduced by poor audio quality and accented English. For more information about how to edit automatically-generated captions, visit the University Center for Teaching and Learning.
  • Human transcriptions, is a modestly-priced service offered by Panopto that provides a centralized, captioning solution using trained professionals to produce more accurate captions for recordings than ASR.

Unedited, machine-generated captions do not meet the ADA 508 compliance standard. However, Human transcriptions meet this requirement.

Benefits of Video Captioning

  • Provides a way for users to search for keywords and concepts
  • Provides additional means for users to learn and retain knowledge
  • Assists individuals with comprehension of video content including those with hearing impairments, English as a second language (ESL) speakers, and viewers who are watching videos in public/noisy settings

Eligibility and Purchase

Closed-captioning services for Lecture Capture requires a University Billing account number and also requires the user have access as a Creator.

Three options are available to University customers for Closed-captioning based on turnaround time:

  • $1.00 per minute — 4-day turnaround
  • $1.25 per minute — 2-day turnaround
  • $1.50 per minute — 1-day turnaround

Process to Request ADA Section 508-Compliant Closed Captioning for Panopto Recordings

As an authorized requestor who has access to the Panther Express system:

  1. Collect information for the recordings that need captions including name, file location (URL), and duration.
    Note: For any recordings with existing captions, review and confirm that you want to replace them with new captions.
  2. Contact the Pitt Technology Help Desk, to request and complete a Panopto Captioning Request Form, and return it to the Pitt Technology Help Desk.
    Note: The completed form includes the requestor’s information and information about the recordings.
  3. Users receive, review, and agree to an estimate from Pitt IT for completion/turnaround time and cost
  4. You receive a notification from Pitt IT that your request has been submitted.
  5. Each recording is gathered by the vendor using the web address (URL) you provided in the requisition form. When completed, the vendor places an ADA Section 508-compliant caption file in the same URL location. You receive a notification from Pitt IT and a CC caption icon appears with your recording.
  6. Pitt IT sends you (the authorized requestor) the final cost, you use PantherExpress to submit the order, then you receive a receipt. 
    Note: The completed request indicates the desired pricing option, turnaround time, and total recording length (in minutes) for all captioned videos.

Data Restrictions and Data Usage

HIPAA protected health information should not be stored in Panopto. Data meeting the classification of “Low Risk” or “Moderate Risk” can be stored in Lecture Capture (Panopto). Please refer to the Data Classification Matrix and the Panopto Security Guide for additional information.

Print Article


Article ID: 1165
Wed 5/8/24 3:18 PM
Wed 5/8/24 3:33 PM

Related Services / Offerings (1)

LECTURE CAPTURE My Pitt Video (Panopto) is lecture capture software that makes it easy to create and share content using your computer.